By a Newsnet reporter

The demise of Rangers hasn’t quite sunk in yet, not if the Scottish media is to be believed - apparently it is they who are still going strong and Scottish football that is on life support.

The Glasgow giant ceased to exist as an entity several weeks ago, yet reading the columns of several Scottish newspapers and listening to the multitude of pundits on the TV and radio, one could be forgiven for thinking that Rangers are still alive and breathing.

Moves are afoot to bring back a Frankenstein resurrection of the former Glasgow giant – shoehorned into the SFL’s First Division.  “Bullied, railroaded and lied to” was how one chairman of a ‘diddy’ team described the machinations. 

Juribrox park will soon see the return of tyrangerssaurus rex, the once extinct beast who will shortly roam the football grounds of Scotland devouring the diddy teams.

The revelations that the 'Board of Management of The Scottish Football League' will grant Rangers a passage into SFL Division One as soon as the board accept that changes are "in the best interests of the game, how it is structured, how it is governed and how it is financed" is as clear an indication that things are about to return to 'normal' as soon as possible.

Raith Rovers chairman Turnbull Hutton caused quite a stir with his forthright views immediately after a meeting last week between SFL club representatives and those of the SPL.  "What kind of game are we running here? It is corrupt," said Mr Hutton.

When SFA Chief Stewart Regan issued what looked like an implied threat, after the newco had been refused entry to the SPL, saying that the situation would lead to “social unrest”, one wondered if corruption was the worst accusation that could be levelled against Scotland’s football authorities.

Irresponsible is another word that comes to mind to describe Regan’s poor choice of words.  He should consider himself lucky he didn’t issue his “social unrest” comment at the height of the London riots.

Mr Regan had obviously forgotten that accident and emergency wards, in Glasgow especially, are already experiencing the symptoms of the 'social unrest' that accompanies the so called 'best football match in the world', namely the Old Firm derby.  There is also the all too frequent attacks resulting from this 'rivarly'.

And let's acknowledge that although unsavoury 'sectarian' elements exist within the fan base of both clubs, that Rangers have a considerably greater problem to address than that of their East End rivals, Celtic.

The predictions of Biblical catastrophe that would descend on Scottish football should both the Old Firm clubs not simultaneously feature in the top flight for several years is nonsense of course.  The carrot of TV money was turned into a stick years ago and football in Scotland has suffered as a result.

Unpredictable kick off times, rendering travel from places like Aberdeen and Inverness, to the Central Belt, impractical is killing the game.

Fans who would otherwise have taken their sons to matches find that the TV set, now increasingly dominated with images from the English Premiership, is the only way to access football.

The result of course is that as the fan base shrinks then the TV money becomes ever more important.  It is a vicious circle.  TV cash has become the class-A drug and clubs need the fix in order to maintain any semblance of survival.

Sir David Murray’s pursuit of European glory was the overdose that destroyed Rangers.  Rangers fans, more than most, have enjoyed unnatural highs due to what Neil Lennon termed “financial doping”.  As with all addicts the come down was always going to be bad.

However, faced with the stark reality that the SPL model, with its reliance on two fattened big beasts, and its worship of the SKY god, was flawed, the reaction from the Scottish media beggars belief.

They seem hell bent on ensuring the self-same model remains in place.  You cannot survive without the Old Firm, is the mantra.

Journalists like Jim Traynor shouting loudest and enjoying the amplification of BBC Scotland, tell all that Scottish football will crumble if a new Rangers is forced to re-enter the league ladder on the bottom rung. 

Last night Mr Traynor (again given a platform by the BBC) claimed that an un-named club chairman, whose season tickets had been boosted by his vote against newco-Rangers, said that the club would go out of business as a result.

The truth is that it isn’t Scottish football that will suffer, but journalists like the aforementioned Mr Traynor who have built a career building, hyping and exaggerating the Old Firm rivalry to such an extent that it eclipsed almost every other aspect of the game north of the Border.

Remove Rangers from the top flight for three seasons and you remove the reason for many people to buy newspapers like Mr Traynor’s Daily Record.  With the Herald also trying to re-build its readership base using a similar Old Firm rivalry model, then you begin to see just why there is so much support for a newly created replacement for Rangers to re-enter the top flight as soon as possible.

Scottish football deserves better than this.  The opportunity for change that this situation has presented should be embraced.

Let’s wean clubs away from the paltry funding offered up by SKY and return the game to the communities it is there to serve.  Scottish football in its present state is not a product that many outwith Scotland want to watch.

The big attraction was always the unsavoury rivalry of the Old Firm and the unfortunate baggage that turned the encounter into a grotesque and ugly spectacle.  The very journalists now bleating about the demise of one of the two ‘giants’ are part of the same media machine that fostered the bitterness.

So, let natural justice take its course and let the new Rangers start next season in Division Three.  Let’s also remove the straitjacket imposed by TV and return to Saturday 3pm kick-off times.

Let’s also return to the community oriented model that uses the 3pm game as a centre-point for an afternoon of entertainment that will have families wanting to attend.  We need imagination and creativity to ensure fans return to watch their teams instead of sitting in front of the TV being force fed a diet of alternating Rangers and Celtic games.

Let’s put this nonsense, that Scottish football cannot survive - without Rangers and Celtic together in the top flight - to bed once and for all.  There will be a short term financial penalty, no question, but long term the prognosis is a healthy one.

The only people who will suffer from a return to a more community led, natural competition based league structure are the people who rely on Rangers and Celtic, and that isn’t other clubs - it's the assorted journalists, pundits and pontificators who are currently predicting doom and gloom.

One final thought before the vote next Friday.  As with all 'cunning plans' there may just be a fly in the ointment, this from the FIFA rules (page 64).


# Briggs 2012-07-08 08:04
So, let natural justice take its course and let the new Rangers start next season in Division Three.

The vast majority of Rangers Fans, the Manager and the CEO have said this is what they wish to happen.

We shall find out what happens to Scottish football when it does.

As they say in football circles 'bring it on'
# farrochie 2012-07-08 19:41
"let natural justice take its course and let the new Rangers start next season in Division Three"

This is inconsistent! If natural justice take its course, the new company could make an application to enter the League. If natural justice takes its course, they will be required to submit 3 years of accounts. If natural justice takes its course, they will compete for a place against other qualified applicants.

That is if there is a vacancy in the SFL, which there isn't.
# SolTiger 2012-07-09 02:15

The Newco should be non-league for 3 years till they have the accounts to allow them entry.

Especially considering the reason WHY the Newco exists rules about accounts should be held up even more now, not ignored.
# GuidedByPollard 2012-07-08 09:30
Most Rangers fans seem to be coming around to the idea of 'taking their medicine' and dropping down to the Third Division...but they're promising some Biblical-style vengeance on the teams they reckon have plotted against them
# McHaggis 2012-07-08 09:33
It is true to suggest most old-rangers fans want to start again in division 3, but i would also suggest only a minority want it for proper reasons of rules, justice and integrity.

The majority want it as they believe it wil punish every other club in Scotland and put a few under. The MSM has already pushed this line.
# cirsium 2012-07-08 09:59
Rather than rely on natural justice, would it not be better to follow the rulebook? Sevco 5088 is not eligible to apply for admission to Division 3. It does not have three years' worth of accounts.
# Briggs 2012-07-08 14:14
Cirsium ........So a Club going down the Newco path has to wait 3 years to get back into football?
Are you certain about that?
McHaggis ........ you can't have it both ways.
How much more punishment is Rangers supposed to take?
I would point out that the only 'crime' that RFC are guilty of is not paying their Tax and N.I. Bill. So far.
In Scotland, at least, an individual, or Business entity, is innocent until proven guilty.
# Aplinal 2012-07-09 13:35
How much more punishment is Rangers supposed to take?

Hang on a minute. Rangers have apparently been breaking the rules / laws for years. They are not being "punished" they are being made to adhere to the rules like any other club. They are damn lucky that UEFA is not involved or they might never play again.

The rules require three years' accounts - they will probably escape this requirement. This is hardly punishment. Instead of the self-pitying bollox from some Ranger's fans, they should shut up and be grateful that they might still have a team to support next year.
# Arthur G 2012-07-14 01:42
Forget it Briggs. You are talking to people who are so consumed with hatred for The Rangers that the truth of the situation does not matter and any piece of concocted nonsense is used as justification. They are deluding themselves that their hatred and, dare I say it, "bigotry", is somehow justifiable in a way that that which they accuse the Rangers support of, is not.

And of course don't mention the other half and its years of falsifying attendance figures and paying signing on fees with wads of cash in Bown pape envelopes, thus defrauding HMRS of countless thousands, maybe millions of pounds, once again, it is only The Rangers that merits this “special treatment”.

The facts are these, kill of The Rangers if you will but kiss goodbye to Scottish football as being anything other than an equivalent of the Welsh League. Of course, that would not seem to be a problem for the 55% of those SPL “football fans”, who responded to a survey and who stated that they would rather their own clubs go to the wall than see The Rangers in any League.

Football fans? I think not. Rangers haters, definitely!

Oh and while we are at it, when Motherwell, St. Mirren, Kilmarnock, Dundee United etc., fail, apparently they are not to be treated in the same manner as The Rangers. No they will be allowed to stay in the SPL - or what is left of it - "sporting integrity? Aye right!
# Skip_NC 2012-07-08 15:52
Cirsium, I suspect that the rules will be changed to facilitate Rangers' admittance to SFL Division 3. I suspect the pyramid system used in most other countries will be a key part of this.

If you introduce the pyramid and remove the artificial barriers between the various national associations, it is much easier for the SFA to then say "Ah well, look at how they deal with liquidated clubs down south." In fact, they could point to Kidderminster Harriers recent experience where they got relegated and then dropped a further two divisions beyond where they would have been playing next season - which is exactly what would happen to Rangers. The key to all this is the SFA doing due diligence on the Sevco 5088's new owners, extracting suitable financial guarantees, ensuring that the guarantors can meet those guarantees and that the SFA can enforce them in the Scottish courts.

Just a final thought. As I understand it, Rangers were able to fill Ibrox every home game with 50,000 supporters. Let's say they lose 90% of their support. The other 10% will be the die-hards who are more likely to travel away. Imagine what that will do for the clubs in Division 3, then Division 2, then Division 1. that's a lot of money being fed into the game right at the point where we need to rebuild as a footballing nation.
# sneckedagain 2012-07-08 15:49
Interest in Scottish Football is diminishing and has been doing so for some considerable time.
Viable competition is the major key to a renewal. The turnout for any Kilmarnock/Ayr United contest or the recent Hearts/Hibs Cup Final provides the recipe for forward progress.
But first we have to deal with the continuous undermining of our national game by our national broadcaster.
I know of no other country in the world in which prime time television coverage is given continuously to the football being played in another country.
It would be interesting to establish how much the BBC pours in to English football as compared to how much proportionately its gives to the Scottish product. English football inhabits a false world in which vast media cash, not attendances, provide its major revenue.
The result of the present arrangement – several hours of English football beamed prime time into Scottish homes several times weekly with the Scottish games relegated to mid week or late night slots – has been to seriously diminish the reputation and attraction of our own game..

Fiddling about with variations on a structure which no longer works will not halt accelerating decline.
The present disaster at Ibrox actually presents an opportunity to effect radical changes that can save Scottish football. Basically the parasitic relationship between most Scottish football teams and the Old Firm is steadily destroying our game (and will eventually destroy the Old Firm) and has to be reversed. This may initially be painful but no renewal is possible without it.
I believe a completely different structure is now possible and certainly required.
Here is an idea
Rangers, St Mirin, Morton, Kilmarnock, Ayr United, Stranraer, Partick Thistle, Queen of the South, Annan, Queens Park, A N Other
Celtic, Clyde, Motherwell, Hamilton, Airdrie, Falkirk, Stirling Albion, Albion Rovers, East Stirling, Dumbarton, A N Other
Hearts, Hibs, Livingston, Berwick Rangers, East Fife, Dunfermline, Alloa, Cowdenbeath, Raith Rovers, Stenhousemuir, Forfar Athletic
Dundee, Dundee United, Aberdeen, St Johnstone, Inverness, Ross County, Peterhead, Elgin, Montrose, Brechin, Arbroath
These four leagues to play home and away to start the season and the top two (or top three) in each to become the Premier League after the New Year
(The remainder after the break up to form into four leagues again (or any other groupings) to provide another eight teams to join the eight Premier teams in an enhanced Scottish Cup or League Cup or similar competitions… other competitions can easily be devised to keep them active and playing).
• This would provide many local derbies and highly competitive contests in the early part of the season,
• an enhanced number of “winners”,
• a better distribution of gate money,
• huge interest in the Premier League as it starts each New Year with real expectation that there might be a serious challenge to the Old Firm
• on opportunity every year for a number of teams to make it into the top league and no relegation which can be intensely destructive to any team and its future prospects
# Mad Jock McMad 2012-07-08 16:37
The American 'football' franchise model in effect - the problem is Scotland only has a handful of grounds which are up to scratch for this concept to be able to work effectively or there would need to be major investment in the football infrastructure to ensure a minimum safe capacity at the smaller clubs.

The 'Rangers' name can only be transfered after liquidation of the failed 'Glasgow Rangers Ltd / Plc' to any new company wishing to use the name to trade under. If the name has sufficient tradeable value it will have been included in the assett sale. Sevco will most likely hold the rights to the name and apply to Company House once the title becomes available to them. The usual form is to register the new company as; Sevco Plc (trading as Glasgow Rangers).

As for Rangers fans of the 'it wisnae us yon big boy did it and run away' persuation. If the club you support had not use illegal means to pay their players to avoid Tax and NI liabilities to the tune of some £70 million they would have had £70 million less to buy and pay the players who 'brought you' your success. There is also the small matter of unpaid transfer fees to other clubs (a football equivalent of 'shoplifting' which involved an UEFA ruling), gate share liabilities which were never paid to the smaller 'diddy clubs' you like to sneer about, plus the other £7 million Whyte never paid the taxman for NI and Tax liabilities which will have an impact on future Government pension rights of individuals in Rangers employ. The diddy employees of Rangers will have to buy the years worth of extra units they thought Rangers had paid for them through PAYE to ensure full pension rights.

These are just a few examples of 'diddy teams and diddy people's' subsidy so Rangers supporters can gloat about 'How great Rangers are'.

You enjoyed the 'glory' now reap the whirlwind ... wouldn't it be funny if the SFL invite Brora to join Div 3 as they actually have three years worth of audited, fiscal accounts....
# west_lothian_questioner 2012-07-08 22:43
"wouldn't it be funny if the SFL invite Brora to join Div 3 as they actually have three years worth of audited, fiscal accounts."

Either Brora or Cove would do and either of them could provide a suitable focus for all those lost bears as they both have the magic word, "Rangers," in their name.
# CharlieObrien 2012-07-08 16:23
I was stirred to thinking when I read the idea that the BBC might be ,"proportionately " (spellcheck not working just now) giving more to the English leagues well that has got some political repercussions also.
# hiorta 2012-07-08 17:30
In all of the utterly disgraceful and contemptible mental gymnastics being performed to allow calculating criminals back into favour, not a thought has been given to the small businessmen who foolishly trusted RFC to act decently and honourablty and pay their bills. It is most likely that their banks will have standard securities on their houses, which will now be sold from under them to try to recoup bank losses of the debt RFC left them in
Clubs who traded players on credit terms have also been conned by RFC. Every tax payer has been deliberately ripped off to the collective tune of £ millions, by the same scoundrels.
Now we are hearing absolute bloody nonsense of them being 'punished enough'.

No, the 'Sham'pions of Govan haven't been punished at all.

What is very visible is just collective low-life scrambling to put 'respectable lipstick' on the grotesque face of an utterly depraved and corrupt, calculating whore, using weasel words and placatory crap to disguise the obscene enormity of the actions of a once-reputable company.

Such people are more than likely to repeat their deceit, should they 'get away with it.'

Scottish football stands at a perilous crossroad and it has only one shot at doing the right thing. If it is not taken, the plug will have been pulled on a sure decline into despicable farce.
# 1820 2012-07-08 19:04
Briggs, Cirsium is 100% correct, which is why we are witnessing this farce trying to force a zombie rangers onto the first division. I have emailed my club chairman to let him know if he is complicit in getting zombie rangers in I won't be back. Scotland is better without them.
# westender 2012-07-08 19:52
The temporary demise of Rangers is a blessing to the future of Scotland and the result of the Independence Referendum.The citizens of West/Central Scotland will be able to think about the fate of their country without being distracted by the crazy sub-world of the Rangers/Celtic pantomime.
# alexmc8275 2012-07-08 21:06
I wouldn't be so sure of that, this has miles to run yet, probably still arguing about it in autumn 2014.
# Angus 2012-07-09 11:33
Rangers and the media never reported armageddon for Scottish football, when they and Celtic wanted to go to the English league. This was pointed out by Tam Cowan during the off the ball on Saturday, to which Archie MacPherson was left stuck for words, after what was quite a highly charged programme.
Link here, Tam Cowan is great!
# sneckedagain 2012-07-09 13:43
"Off the Ball " is great and required listening for me (and MY WIFE) every Saturday.
That is what should be on BBC TV Saturday afternoons in Scotland instead of continuous coverage of English football
# westie7 2012-07-09 14:38
Now the SFA have blocked the FREE Agents from signing elsewhere, obviously nobody in the SFA/SPL management has ever been made redundant via an administration.... or they would be aware of the freedom of the individual not to transfer under TUPE which I personally have done freely in the past.
# tartanpigsy 2012-07-09 20:03
Only briefly checked this link out on Dundee's forum, and it seems to be quite a good exposer of the 'mince' being spouted by the incapable administrators of Scottish football
# jurist 2012-07-10 15:20
If the problem of what to do with Rangers is approached from the perspective of: sport, clubs, fans; then wrong decisions will be made. The correct approach, I would suggest, to get sound decision-making is: industry, companies, customers.
# gus1940 2012-07-11 18:36
Is there any significance in the fact the an anagram of Regan is Ranger or near enough.

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