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SPL fair play proposals provoke stormy reaction

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Jim Spence | 10:41 UK time, Thursday, 12 April 2012

The Scottish Premier League is in troubled waters after announcing its proposals to tackle financial mismanagement.

Although the rules are badly needed, the timing sits uneasily with Rangers' lingering liquidation fears.

Now, the SPL finds itself sandwiched between the two issues, trapped between the mutually exclusive rocks of sporting integrity and financial consideration.

A tide of resentment is lapping round the ankles of those running the top flight, from Rangers fans who feel the proposals are unjust and from fans of other clubs who are openly cynical of their timing.

At present, the proposals to tackle financial mismanagement in the game are just that, proposals.

Many supporters though see them as an attempt to open the door for a newco Rangers to avoid paying their dues and re-emerging relatively unscathed in the top division.

The proposals have been under discussion for some time it has been suggested, but in the febrile atmosphere of Scottish football, many fans are getting the kind of whiff associated with Arbroath harbour on a breezy day.

Rangers face penalties under new SPL financial fair play proposals

The SPL will argue that the new rules, if accepted, will set a more rigorous and transparent framework for the financial affairs of clubs.

That is a good thing and long overdue.

Perception though is the key factor here and many fans think, rightly or wrongly, that what is going on is an attempt to ensure the survival of Rangers in some guise in the top league.

That begs the question of what is the appropriate punishment for Rangers, if they emerge as a newco?

The answer to that depends on individual notions of justice and will be coloured by a host of factors.

The financial proposals have to be voted on by all 12 clubs, but the six man SPL board have the even bigger decision to make as to whether a new Rangers enters the league at all.

That judgement will require the wisdom of Solomon: weighing on one hand the financial benefits of Rangers to the other clubs and on the other hand the potential damage to the sporting integrity of the league.

Rangers have behaved with a reckless disregard for the rules that everyone else is expected to abide by.

What comes next could be a morality tale.

Will it be Real Politic, where moral judgement is set aside in favour of pure financial consideration?

Or will Rangers be required to purge themselves in some accomodation with the Scottish Football League and work their way back up the divisions to emerge refreshed and renewed?

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    If Rangers liquidate and come back as a newco, they must be treated exactly the same way any other club would be. Handily, we have the recent case of Gretna to show us how other clubs are treated. Gretna 2008 did not get to come straight into the top flight. They didn't even get entry to the SFL. The original Gretna were relegated to division three for their financial troubles, and there is no reason why this should not also happen to Rangers.

    Anything else means the game in Scotland is completely and utterly finished. The lack of competition and suspected Old Firm bias is bad enough as it is, but allowing Rangers to remain in the SPL as a newco would be all the proof we need that Scottish football is not about sport, but about money.

    We need to get the pride back, and any true Rangers fan would think so too, because how can you be proud of a club that needs the rules to be changed to ensure their hegemony? Forget about whatever threats TV companies make, because without integrity, the game is finished anyway. This should be the opportunity to make the massive necessary changes we all know need to be made - fairer voting system, enlarged top flight, pyramid league structure, and possibly even the abolition of at least one of the three administrative bodies.

    If Rangers are allowed to stay in the SPL, I for one am finished with the SPL, and I know I am not the only one - the idea is all over the blogosphere.

  • Comment number 2.

    Jim , in my opinion if Rangers are liquidated they should be demoted. If they are found guilty of double contracts they should be demoted.

    The SPL is down to its hard core support for most clubs. I think the number of those supporters who will throw the towel in if Rangers are not dealt with properly could be massive.

    There needs to financial integrity and sporting integrity. If the SPL is to be about more than just 2 teams and have even an ounce of credibility then when the time comes they have to be strong. If they sell out their principles they will have nothing left.

    Selling out to keep Rangers in the SPL if these things happen will send out the wrong message.

  • Comment number 3.

    Rangers are 50% of the reason why professional football in Scotland exists at all, so I'd be amazed if Rangers Phoenix Ltd did not commence their existence in the SPL, and I wouldn't like to be on the board of the SPL having to decide between moral justice and expediency.
    By the way, it's also sad to see that since this article went up over an hour ago that it has only generated 2 comments, such is the irrelevance of Scottish footy nowadays.

  • Comment number 4.

    well said Doug#1

    and another thing..... Football will survive if Rangers are demoted, it will different but will survive. But Jim if you lose the integrity, there is no way back from that. For many people that will be it .. Game over as they say

  • Comment number 5.

    The lack of comments on this topic are, in my opinion two fold... 1. We fans will have no say in the carve up thats gonna follow Rangers going into meltdown, they along with Celtic will decide on what happens as they always do and the rest of us just have to touch our toes....and 2. We are all pig sick of the whole sorry saga.

  • Comment number 6.

    I sympathise with the Rangers supporters because they did not cause the problems the club faces but under no circumstances can their football club be treated differently to any other. Juve and Fiorentina were not too big to be demoted in Italy for financial foul play and as Douglas says, we already have the example of Gretna as a precedent.

    No2 is spot on also - most scottish clubs are currently down to hard core support and if they feel the SPL is not acting with integrity the consequences for the game as a whole will be far worse than an SPL without Rangers for a few seasons. Also, think of the benefit to the smaller clubs as Rangers make their way back up the divisions.

    What Scottish Football now has is perhaps its greatest opportunity in years to get things right but I fear, as always, they will not listen to the fans, the majority of which clearly want a bigger league - preferably with Rangers but not until they have paid their dues.

  • Comment number 7.

    ...oh, and thanks for Jelavic by the way. He'll sink the Reds on Saturday, just you see!

  • Comment number 8.

    I agree with the last posters but while we can argue about sporting integrity v money we also have to consider the (if proved) breaches of SFA / SPL rules. If Rangers knowingly ran with double contracts and therefore used ineligible players then the punishment would have to be expulsion from the SPL at the very least.

    Like many others, I am finished with Scottish football if the SPL brushes this lot under the carpet

  • Comment number 9.

    Mightyblooze, Rangers are not 50% of the reason professional football exists in Scotland. They are, however, 50% of the problem with Scottish Football and until the voting structure is changed that will continue. It's nothing personal against Rangers or Celtic - the other 50% of the problem- it is just a fact. They have the power to veto any proposal they feel is not directly of benefit to themselves but better for the game as a whole. That is simply not right in any organisation.

  • Comment number 10.

    I've been a lifelong Aberdeen fan (since the 60's) but will be finished with Scottish football if Rangers are allowed to walk away from their debts and return straight into the SPL. There is little point in watching a rigged competition. Having gauged the views of fellow Dons fans, I reckon Aberdeen will be playing in front of crowds of 3-4000 next season if this is allowed. That's the real choice for SPL Chairmen - they can take the Sky money in the short term, but they'll lose a generation of fans and kill the game in Scotland.

  • Comment number 11.

    Reading this post with interest but i do wish the text didn't end with a question mark .... wish someone could give us a definitive answer. Were the SPL rules amended to help Rangers stay in the SPL or not. Time will tell i guess but that doesn't stop a verbal volley from fans or other teams claiming foul play in the short term , the SPL hierarchy cant be that blatant surely ?

  • Comment number 12.

    Football fans won't want go near this as it's a touchy subject. Say that you want Rangers demoted and you will be accused of being a biased Celtic fan. Say that you want them to stay up and you will be accused of being a biased Rangers fan. You're not going to win, and i think that when the SPL meet to discuss Rangers re-entry into the SPL (if this occurs) it will be much of the same. I could see a vote split right down the middle. Where we go from here, I do not know.

  • Comment number 13.

    There are recent examples of where sporting integrity has taken second place to business concerns: Leeds newco were not demoted in England and neither were one of the big Argentinian teams who should have been relegated last year but were not. If the SPL kept newco then it would be neither unusual nor unprecedented.

    Rangers should be penalised to the extent that newco is effectively weakened but not to the detriment of the whole financial structure. There will be no Europe for 3 years and we will all still get to laugh when Rangers fans complain in fits of hubris about why retrospective action is morally wrong and they call for boycotts of away grounds.

    I expect lots of different and some false moral high grounds on this blog as well just to keep the fun going.

  • Comment number 14.

    The SPL could relegate Rangers to Division One as a punishment, it would show they're willing to punish the big boys but won't affect the top flight long term as they'll be back within a season. It would even give the First Division clubs a financial boost for a year as they'd get better gates and (possibly) more games on TV. Given that fans of the non-Old Firm clubs don't care who wins the title anyway, does it matter that Celtic will be a shoe-in for one season?

    The same happened with Juve in Italy. The league get to appear tough without greatly harming the long term prospects of the club. Everyone came out of it satisfied.

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    Rangers Demoted & Dundee promoted please!

  • Comment number 17.

    I find the following statement much more interesting "If passed, clubs who suffer an insolvency event would incur a penalty of the greater of 15 points or a third of their total of points from the previous season. ".

    As Rangers don't know how they will come out of administration it is in their interest to just sit down at the start of their remaining games and just let the opposition score goals. They can't get anything this season (Europe etc) so they might as well do what they can to reduce the punishement next season.

    At the moment they would lose 21 points. If they won their remaining games they would be deducted 26 points.

    Rangers might also decide it's better to start at the bottom of the English league instead of the bottom of the Scottish one. No points deduction and the possibility that within 5/6 years they would be able to earn EPL money instead of SPL money.

    Of course that is likely to mean the the TV rights for the SPL would be worth less anyway as their would no longer be any Old Firm games to broadcast.

  • Comment number 18.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 19.

    jim its pretty clear the proposed new rules tell u the newco rangers are going to be allowed to stay in the spl and on what terms. wee charles efforts again last night to understand the sit on radio are a downright embarrassment. he is a "lamb" that surely must end up on the producers dinner table. the real issue here has to be gers administrators out of their depth and racking up huge fees. lets look at the evidence. 1. they filled the administration forms in wrong. 2. they ludicrously tried to sign a player after administration incurring potentially a c75k expense. 3. they broke the rules of the two competitions they were left in and their role is to protect the business as a going concern and usher it out of administration. 4. they abyssmally failed to convince a judge they could rip up the ticketus deal by failing to produce enough information to back their case. 5. they have now (yesterday) incurred another delay and no doubt more huge fees from a tbc scenario when they have at least two tbc scenarios in their sale prospectus already.I WOULD SUGGEST ADMINISTRATION TO THIS STANDARD SHOULD PERHAPS ATTRACT A 75% REDUCTION IN FEES FOR THE PERIOD OF ADMINISTRATION AFTERALL IF THE PLAYERS CAN DO IT !!!!!!

  • Comment number 20.

    @17 By "bottom of the English league" I take it you mean L2 which is actually nowhere near the bottom of the pyramid and full of clubs who get bigger gates than most of the Scottish First Division! We don't want or need Rangers (or Celtic for that matter), both of whom would struggle in the Championship let alone the Premier League.
    I reckon the old idea of a North Atlantic league has far more legs in it that any attempt by the Old Firm to enter the Premier League, where both would probably be relegated in the first season. It would give us a laugh though!

  • Comment number 21.

    17 wibblemyfins How do you suggest Rangers get into the English league at any level ? the FA, UEFA and FIFA, all stand in the way of that idea becoming reality.

  • Comment number 22.

    Scottish football is irrelevant, knock the whole league setup on the head. Surely nobody would miss it

  • Comment number 23.

    wibblemyfins - Rangers might decide they would prefer to be in the English league, but with all the problems they've had (including with fans) I doubt the English league would want them. It's also quite possible they would not make the EPL in 5/6 years - they're a Championship side (or maybe EPL relegation scrappers) at the moment and a few years in the lower leagues will only make them worse. Surely Rangers fans would rather take a few seasons in the SFL and then be challenging for silverware again when they get back to the SPL, rather than be eternally challenging for the Championship play-offs?

  • Comment number 24.

    If, and it is still an if, Rangers are liquidated by new owners i'd want us to start in the third division if these rules come into play. Essentially these rules allow the other SPL clubs to have their cake and eat it.

    Rangers would be on -10 for 2 seasons so Celtic will win 3 in a Row. We would lose 75% of the revenue we were due, giving the other SPL clubs a wee bung however we would still take our support to fill Tannadice, Rugby Park, Pittodrie etc.

    No thanks!! Let the other 11 go without the increase in revenue whilst we tour the rest of Scotland, putting money into the lower leagues by selling out their grounds. Have Dundee in the SPL, with their 2 previous administrations in the past 10 years they are ideal for the new rules the SPL are making up as they go along. Or keep Dunfermline in, for a team that are all but certain to not be in the SPL next year John Yorkston certainly has enough to say about it.

    If anyone thinks the SFL would not allow Rangers to join in division three and multiply their income exponentially for at least three years then they probably think the Easter Bunny was in their house last weekend.

  • Comment number 25.

    #21

    They would have to buy over a cash-strapped conference club - plenty about - or buy over another club (e.g. Portsmouth).

    There are no binding legal impediments to doing it.

  • Comment number 26.

    still think the ideal solution to this problem is to move to an 18 team spl and 24 team sfl

    have and international 8 team tournament (top 8 in SPL play in summer or winter tourney abroad)

    open up regional set ups underneath


    think there is going to be a lot of potentials punishments for Rangers and should be looked into in two parts

    for finiancial mismanagement it looks like point deductions etc over next few years

    if the ETA or whatever they are called then it could be more sanctions perhaps losing points in the previous seasons which could result in league titles lost etc
    suppose then an minefield with further penalties and loss in renevue for other clubs may need to be looked at however only time will tell what will happen with rangers

    once the main questions have been answered then can the punishments really be looked at

  • Comment number 27.

    Despite my username, I am a lifelong Rangers fan. I wouldn't describe myself as a supporter though, I haven't given Rangers any of my hard-earned for a number of years. Various reasons for that, which are probably best kept for a different discussion. Any newco Rangers should start in the lowest tier. No pain, no gain, Scottish football has to bite the bullet and administer the laws fairly and equally.
    The best solution for Scottish football would be two divisions of 16 teams with a pyramid system below that. It should be done as soon as possible, probably the season after next. Less games, more competition would mean better crowds.

  • Comment number 28.

    As far as I am aware the SPL can't physically demote Rangers to the 3rd division as they can only demote to the lowest league which at this point is the SPL.

    However if they refused Rangers entry to the SPL then Rangers would need to apply to the SFL for membership which would allow them entry at the lowest league which is the 3rd division.

  • Comment number 29.

    Rob04: the Leeds story is complicated, but the simple fact is that the Leeds United Association Football Club that was formed in 1919 still exists to this day. It has never been dissolved like Gretna were in 2008, or like Rangers are possibly going to do. The club never actually entered liquidation, even though some of the associated companies Ken Bates was chairman of did.

    But that and the Argentinian club are not the point anyway. We're talking about Scotland. There are numerous precedents for what a club does if it goes into liquidation. Gretna 2008, Airdrie United and the current version of Clydebank, not to mention the numerous clubs like Third Lanark that came decades before. If Rangers enter liquidation but don't actually fold, then they should expect to be relegated to the third division like Livingston were in 2009.

    Quite simply, there is no precedent for a club folding in Scotland and being allowed to come back as a brand new club in the top flight. The game's integrity depends on this remaining so.

  • Comment number 30.

    The timing of these new rules seems a bit suspicious - it sounds like the other spl clubs don't want rangers to be demoted but just want them to be handicapped for a while.
    Obviously the timing is also killing the sale of rangers due to the unknowns - if a new owner came in and wanted to liquidate the club surely the rules previously applied to gretna should be enforced, rangers really have nothing to gain by staying in the spl without being able to challenge for the title or qualification for european comps, if the club were to start from scratch, it should be just that, start from the bottom and work up - if the spl becomes more uncompetitive and loses tv money so be it, these are the rules in place
    spl can't just change the rules depending on the club that has broken them and potential money concerns

  • Comment number 31.

    Well said Douglas Daniel #1 and #29

  • Comment number 32.

    Am i missing something or is this not the case?

    They come out of admin - stay in spl - points deducted

    Liquidation - demotion to thrid div?

  • Comment number 33.

    I think it is shocking that liquidation can be so openly discussed with regards to this scenarion.. Rangers as a company have some means available to them to try and pay back some debts.. liquidation is meant to be last ditch stuff.. not just because its easier..

    I wish the media and country as a whole would put more pressure on this 'establishment' as its often called to actually pay their due. They have celebrated their British culture for many a year now and are effectively looking at a plan which will put the British public out of pocket anywhere between 20 and 90 million pounds depending on which media outlet and tax case you wish to believe.

    I think any cowardly attempt to pull off this 'newco' should be met with an application form from the SFL similar to the type any aspiring Junior team would be met with if they chose to apply to Division 3.

  • Comment number 34.

    Find it hilarious that there are some people here who think Rangers/Celtic would struggle in the English Championship. These people seem to forget that a previous Rangers striker is knocking goals in for fun for Everton just now. Not to mention the fact that we have teams like Spurs knocking on Celtic's doors for the young James Forrest.

    The old firm could hold their own with the top flight English. With their fan base, it wouldn't be long for them to be a huge contender for English honours. If you can't see that, then you don't really know that much about the Scottish game and perhaps shouldn't be passing comment on the subject!

  • Comment number 35.

    Jim I'm 27 years old been going to scottish football for about the last 23/24 years If rangers are liquadated and go straight back into the SPL i will no longer follow Scottish football what will be the point? Whats to stop Hearts doing similar and clearing there debt? and then everybody else? Why dont football clubs clear off supporters debts or give supporters "loans" do this and then get supporters to pay these "loans" back.

    This will just show scottish football for what it is Celtic and Rangers if Rangers are allowed to say and i'm sorry to say but instead of following my local team i will go shopping with the missus.

  • Comment number 36.

    # 34... Dont point out anything remotely realistic about the Premiership... you should know by now that it being the best league in the world that a sensible viewpoint isnt welcome.

  • Comment number 37.

    “How should we demonstrate? One option: At the next set of SPL matches, for the first minute of the game, turning our backs on the action and being totally silent while banners were unfurled with a simple message…. “No integrity, no sport” The one minute would symbolise the fate awaiting the SPL. Thousands of fans prepared to turn their backs on the game

  • Comment number 38.

    Intresting blog jim.
    #1&2 Bang on.
    #3 Mightyblues your more of a fruit & nut than a toffee, where did your current boss learn his trade and SAF?????

    You and #22 havotelli wannna check who founded and shaped your english league way back.Show some respect to the fans of other scottish clubs, who some have given their all for many years.Rangers cannot be allowed to be treated differently from any other club or as we say the baas on the slates.This would be the final straw for many fans already disillusioned with the staleness and lack of action needed to inject some intrest back into our game.When will they ever listen ...zzzzz

  • Comment number 39.

    To me there is no argument as a precedent has been set. Irrespective of what happens in other leagues across the world, Gretna were bumped for going into liquidation. The same should happen to Rangers and if it doesn't it's an embarrasment and a disgrace.

    Rangers are currently a very well supported club. This is because they have been successful during a time where they have spent money they don't have. Success attracts more fans and prize money (and so on). By cheating, Rangers have potentially deprived other clubs of success and thus increasing their fan base. For this reason, I can't buy into the argument that we must bend over backwards so they retain their SPL status.

    It is essential to the integrity of the game that they are punished equally to Gretna. Let the lower leagues embrace their visits and maybe long term all of Scottish football will benefit.

    I know that I for one will give up on watching league football if I am given further evidence of Celtic and Rangers favouritism.

  • Comment number 40.

    Would Rangers or Celtic survive in the EPL? Simply NO. You may have History but then so have clubs like Notts Forest and Aston Villa to mention a few doesnt make you a great club. Its a sub standard league with sub standard teams. That is down to lack of funding and the size of the leagues.

  • Comment number 41.

    #38 Pipe down will you we invented the whole bloody game so don't give it. Just pointing out that nobody cares about your dumpy league with it's pub team standard football

  • Comment number 42.

    Lets ask ourselves the question, what if it had been Hearts or Aberdeen instead of Rangers? What do you think the response to the idea of parachuting any newco straight back into the SPL would have been in the corridors of power? I suspect we all know that they would have said - "take your medicine and good luck in Div 3 lads."

    The point here is the SPL cannot claim with a straight face to have been caught unawares by all this nonsense. They've known for at least 2 years that RFC were on the brink of administration and could have gone under at any minute. The fact they are coming out only NOW to do something about it looks to me very much like a cynical attempt to rig things in favour of RFC. Basically they are going to wag a finger at RFC and say to the others "anymore of this financial doping from the rest of you and we're going to come down on you like a ton of bricks." Rangers? "Here you go lads, we'll pretend to punish you with a puny 10 pt deduction for the next 2 seasons, now don't do it again or you'll be in real trouble like the others, you hear!?" As a fan of a non-OF club its no surprise to me but I think this time the contempt felt for the OF lickspittle at the SPL and SFA is finally going to come back to bite them. No more.

  • Comment number 43.

    @24 westendger a brill post if only u can convince another c 49999 north east and south end gers u have the answer. would def call the spls bluff, celtics bluff,the tens bluff, killie chairmans bluff, the two morris dancers at the spl and sfas bluff, sky and espns bluff, toppings bluff,administrators bluff,bidders bluff,super allys bluff and the world and his brothers bluff. would hit the integrity note spot on. alas alak burns tells us the best laid plans o mice and men gang aft astray and suspect thats where we are heading with this. u r so right just take the bull by the dangly bits admit the double contracts, make the best cva possible by selling mcgregor,whittaker,davis,naismith,lafferty poss murray park and lets all start again.sorted !!!!!

  • Comment number 44.

    34. Liam Spencer - I'll have to disagree with you there mate. Plenty of players move from Championship or lower league sides up to the EPL and do well - Chris Smalling even went almost straight from non-league - so that doesn't mean Rangers are a good EPL club. It just means they had a decent player. Their fan base is impressive but then so is Sunderland's, and nobody sees them as genuine contenders.

    If Celtic and Rangers spent several years in the EPL and benefited from its money then maybe they could be a force to be reckoned with. I don't doubt that they have the ambition or fervent support to do well, and they have the reputation to attract good players. But at the moment they would be Championship sides on a par with say Leeds or Middlesbrough. Not exactly struggling, solidly upper-mid table, with an outside shot of the play-offs.

  • Comment number 45.

    @WestEndGer - I don't think a ticket allocation of 4000 constitutes "filling Pittodrie". I'd personally give you the 2,000 given to other teams bar Celtic and do without the extra revenue. You only need to look at the number of destroyed seats after the two of you visit our beloved home to know why.

  • Comment number 46.

    @mightyblooze - I hope you haven't paid them the fee for Jelavic seeing as he wasn't theirs to sell in the first place it seems!

  • Comment number 47.

    The fans have the real power here, for possibly the first time in a long time.
    If the fans of Kille, Motherwell etc wrote en mass to their chairmen advising them that they would not be renewing their season tickets in the event of Rangers newco being admitted to the SPL they would be making the financial benefit of having the Rangers newco in the league not just pointless but probably financially damaging as well. That would leave the Chairmen with a simple option, that being to act with integrity and banish Rangers to the 3rd Div.
    One other point, the SPL can demote Rangers to the lowest tier of the SPL, in other words the SPL; but we would not be talking about Rangers, we'd be talking about Rangers newco, who don't play in the SPL (or anywhere) so is that point not invalid?

  • Comment number 48.

    @34 Liam - Post 44 says it all.
    @38 - Where did I say Scotland doesn't produce great managers? Nowhere, that's where. Our very own Dour Davey being a case in point. And I did thank you lot for Jelavic btw.
    Also, and if you can prove me wrong I'll doff me cap to you, I do believe that Scottish input into the founder members of the Football League (no need to put "English" in front of it because it was the first!) was minimal at best.
    All I was getting at was that without the Old Firm Scotland would struggle to maintain professional football at even the low standard it is now. Surely no-one can argue with that?

  • Comment number 49.

    In an era where football devalues itself on a daily basis the SFA should have the guts and impose the heaviest penalty if Rangers go into liquidation and return as a newco.

    If Rangers are liquidated then by the spirit of the Law of the Land, which should take precedence, they are no longer a legal entity. As such any newco should be subject to and comply with, regardless of the history of the previous company, the existing rules and regulations of the SFA.

    The precedence here is Gretna. if the SFA circumvent the rules to ensure Rangers play in the big league it will devalue that league and any success achieved.

    34. Liam Spencer - As for your question the bottom line if Celtic/Rangers want to play in England then they should resign from there position in Scotland and move north of the border. Interesting that Dermot Desmond bought Carlisle recently. As for Celtic/Rangers being competitive as many have said they would be on a par with lower half Premiership and top half of Championship. Which would pose a huge question to the "we win every season supporter or I will not come" because there would be no League Championship, no Euro football and potentially relegation. Over the year attendances have fallen when the Old Firm are not winning.

  • Comment number 50.

    46 - Didn't know that! Who held his registration then?

  • Comment number 51.

    Oh by all means. Let's just keep Rangers in the SPL- In fact, because they've done so admirably in the face of adversity, why don't we give them their points back next season? Why not give them some extra TV revenue to help them on their way?

    Clearly Scottish football exists to keep the Auld Firm happy at the expense of everyone else. I understand that it is perhaps unrealistic to relegate Rangers to the 3rd division but I see absolutely NO reason not to relegate them at least once- and with a points penalty. And for a few seasons.

    Keeping Rangers in the SPL is the deathknell for Scottish football- it shows there is one rule for them and one rule for everyone else. Sure, you made a god awful job at running your club- but because you're Rangers, we'll just forget it. Yeah?

    NO. Rangers should be relegated at least once AND with a points penalty. I for one will stop attending Scottish league football in all guises if Rangers are not thoroughly and equally dealt with- just as we would expect any other team to be.

  • Comment number 52.

    Glasgow Rangers will be allowed to stay in the SPL, sad but true, the pay off the other clubs may be looking for is a change to the 9-3 vote. Glasgow Rangers have cheated there way to numerous domestic honours while 10 other clubs in the spl have fed on scraps, the "rebel 10" have got there timing on this absolutely spot on and the pay off will be yes to 9-3 or away and start again. They will get there way eventually - with no rangers in the SPL next season - who is going to cosy up to celtic to block it. Not before time too

  • Comment number 53.

    50 - Rangers held his reg but they haven't paid Rapid Vienna for him, and Rapid want their money and will report RFC to UEFA in the event they don't.

  • Comment number 54.

    Once there was a player names Brent and he was a yeti

  • Comment number 55.

    Wel, you have to hand it to the SPL. They've done a spectacular job of shooting themselves in the foot, and annoying just about every Scottish football fan in the process. It's ut the sale of RFC in the mix, I mean, who would want to pay off that amount of debt, only to find themselves saddled with a pay cut from the SPL anyway? So that's the sale in doubt then.

    As for setting up a newco, well, they HAVE to apply the rules as set out at the time RFC went into administration. If that means RFC being hoofed out of the SPL, then so be it. It happened to Gretna in the same situation, so it should happen to Rangers as well.

    In their attempt to appease all sides in this matter, the SPL have only succeeded in driving a bigger wedge between all parties, and this will have a more detrimental effect on Scottish football than just leaving well alone, and applying the rules fairly and evenly when the dust has settled.

    My conclusion is that the SPL is run by fools, and if that is what Scottish football wants, then get on with it. I suspect it isn't, in which case, get rid of the current people who run the SPL and replace them with competent administrators who aren't afraid the set rules, and implement them in a fair and even handed way.

  • Comment number 56.

    #34

    Your arguement just doesnt stand up. Premiership clubs have been buying Southampton's players for years and they've been performing in the Premiership. Walcott, Oxlade, Bale etc etc - so by your logic Southampton are a dead cert' for the Champions League spots next year? Jelovic has only scored a hand full of goals anyway, so I wouldn't get to hyped about him just yet. It could all turn sour very quickly.

  • Comment number 57.

    Sadly, the need to show integrity could, and should, also be applied south of the border to English football, and world wide by UEFA and FIFA

  • Comment number 58.

    Gents, kindly refrain from calling this an ‘old firm’ issue. The matter pertains only to Rangers FC. Lest some forget Celtic nearly went out of business nearly 20 years ago. Absolutely no changing the SFA regulations to smooth the way back from a reincarnation of Celtic FC. No support from Scottish ministers on national TV bemoaning the fate of the club and referring to Celtic as part of the fabric of Scottish society, absolutely no wailing and gnashing of teeth about the demise of Scottish football should Celtic cease to exist from the establishment media and absolutely no mention that Celtic should be allowed to forget their debts. As others have mentioned there was no support for the Dundee and Gretna’s of Scottish football either. Any other Scottish club in their predicament would soon find themselves at the bottom of Division 3.
    What this boils down to is a concerted effort by ‘the establishment’ to ensure that Rangers survive. No mention of their 134 million debt, how many teachers, policemen and nurses would the tax avoidance have paid for?

  • Comment number 59.

  • Comment number 60.

    @Douglas Daniel - there are no flaws in this chap's suggestions as far as I can see: discussion over.

    Incidentally, wrt some other posts, there is no doubt Rangers and Celtic would have done well in a British Premier League - to suggest otherwise is just misplaced patriotism by English contributors. The size, support and potential income of the clubs would guarantee the interest of top players - I would've loved to have seen it years ago ... and I'm English. I suspect the 2 clubs would've benefitted greatly too (and so would've the League).

  • Comment number 61.

    Totally agree with #1 Douglas Daniel. This is a defining moment for me. I've followed Hibs through thick and (mostly) thin for over 30 years. If a Rangers newco gets straight back into the SPL I won't be back to any more SPL matches.

  • Comment number 62.

    Apart from those directly earning a living from the daily soap opera that they describe as the 'Old Firm'; most of the rest of us would concede that the two together are profoundly detrimental to the body social in Scotland.

    Anyone connected with them as a 'pair' are invariably 'tainted' - always have been.

    The clubs, press, fans, refs, SFA, PL bigwigs have all been affected by the dissonence that surrounds the two of them.

    I am a Celt and (unlike fans of most other teams) see my club as more than just a 'local' sporting body. That it was set up to serve a larger purpose and still does so today,

    That isn't to say that other clubs supporters haven't as much 'passion' for their team, it's just that Celtic (along with very few other clubs) offer themselves as 'extraordinary' in the true sense of the word and that this is recognised by their own fans - and has clearly been seen historically, by many who are not fans, as 'worrying'.

    Rangers are not the same as Celtic - i.e. just opposite sides of the same coin.

    If Rangers had never existed, Celtic would, very possibly, still be today the focus for its diaspora, as its been throughout its history.

    Celtic were born without a thought for a 'Rangers' and if it were to come to pass that there was no Rangers in the future, I would not feel deprived in any way.

    The two clubs together are a corrupting influence. Suspicion and mistrust, misbehaviour and the ugliest violence, surround what are supposed to be 'sporting' entities. The truth is that they are not.

    I think that I speak for most Celts in saying that if we never had any dealings with Rangers ever again, that would be our preference.

    Matches against Rangers are NOT what Celts most look forward to, more that they are endured.

    Celtic Park on a big European night is where the real buzz exists. It's just uber-excitement tainted by - well, nothing - no downsides.

    I don't see that merely re-establishing a Rangers with minimal punishment is good for anyone.

    Celtic don't want it, Scotland doesn't deserve it, the rest of the clubs will have final confirmation that they count for nothing and Rangers would never again be able to claim those things they apparently 'stood' for: dignity, honour, winners???

    Both should get out of Scotland - many would argue that Celtic never really were 'Scottish' and Rangers have never really articulated much 'scottishness' either -in turn, favouring Ulster, the Dutch, Israel??? even England for Gods sake.

    If anyone thinks that after many decades of 'Dougie, Dougie' type suspicion, double contracts going back to the early 1990's, mis-use of 'off the books' financial instruments and funding current operations by simply not paying taxes - that all may amount to well over one hundred million pounds if the judgment goes against them - and that then Rangers just get back in with piddling 'penalties' that are a mere fraction of the 'gains' made by cheating, they are wrong.

    This is a watershed moment and I'm sure that - whatever the outcome - Celtic, for one, will be waiting with a long list of follow-up questions for Fifa, Uefa and the Scottish authorities.

  • Comment number 63.

    Sporting integrity is much more important than financial integrity.

    It amazes me that people could even suggest such a scenario exists that money is more important.

    If it is proved that Rangers have effectively been on steroids that is gaining an unfair advantage by tax evasion then they must be punished severely.

    If Rangers then try to further cheat by starting a new co to avoid tax they should have to reapply for league membership the same as Spartans.

    Like others have suggested if Rangers are not punished appropriately for their actions I am finished with Scottish football.

  • Comment number 64.

    Timing and content of any rule change is always going to arouse suspicion but as yet nothing has been agreed. I understand that these will require to be passed both by the SPL board and the member clubs as a change in articles is proposed. If that is the case then the power to veto, under the current voting arrangements, would allow one club (not necessarily Rangers or Celtic) to prevent them being passed.

    The one point which I haven't seen mentioned anywhere (media or clubs) is that the SPL 10 clubs, without Rangers and Celtic, could change the voting without the OF having any input - provided RFC enter liquidation. At the moment there are 6 Board members who are expected to split 50/50 on any issue (voting or otherwise) and the casting vote lies with Mr Topping who will go with Celtic and Neil Doncaster.

    There is a provision in the articles for the appointment of a non-executive director which can be implemented at a general meeting (there’s one being held on 30 April) via an ordinary resolution. As the SPL 10 can control any of the ordinary resolutions then they could appoint a non-executive director of their choice and control a majority on Board votes, while removing the need for a casting vote by Mr Topping.

    If the SPL 10 control the Board that leaves the passing of special qualified resolutions at 83%still being controlled by CFC and RFC (IA). This would be resolved when RFC(IA) enters liquidation leaving 11 clubs to vote on matters. Of these 11 clubs the SPL 10 will hold 90.9% of the total vote. This would give them complete control and allow them to force through whatever voting structure they determine (9-3, 8-4 etc) for the SPL and ANY other resolution they require. Scottish Football could at last be controlled by the dog rather than the tail.

    This does not involve an agreement with Administrators, RFC(IA) or newco as the terms will be determined by the SPL which in turn would be determined by the SPL 10. OF would be unable to veto and could contribute to the extent of every other member club.

    Or am I missing something? Jim - any chance of asking someone the question?

  • Comment number 65.

    13 - Rob04 - Have a look at the Argentinian league table and tell me where River Plate are - not there? No, they got relegated and are playing in the second division. Also, as someone else has said, Leeds were not liquidated. Both poor points to use to convey your point, which I actually agree with.
    Rangers HAVE to be relegated to the third division of the SFL a la Gretna, or what's the point in Scottish football? Also, Scotland needs a bigger top - flight league, with 18 clubs, only playing each other twice a season will add to the competition.
    Finally, Rangers and Celtic in the English Premier League? I believe Rangers lost to Maribor this season, a team that Birmingham beat. Both Old Firm teams would be relegated from the Championship straight away - never mind the premier league!!

  • Comment number 66.

    I think most non OF fans are in agreement with one another. Rangers need to be dealt with in the same manner as any other club would be/has been dealt with in the past. The only people i hear moaning about it are mostly media people moaning about ther league being less exciting should rangers not be there. I find this pretty hilarious as i think most of us non OF fans think this league couldnt get any worse (oh wait yes it could we can go back to 10 teams).

    In fact a few years of not having to sit and suffer looking at the grim mugs of the rangers fans would be bliss in my opinion. So celtic would win the league every year. Who cares, rangers/celtic, whats the difference.

    Whats needed now is unity. Unity by the 10 other clubs like they never have been before. Now is the time to be radical. I dont trust people like Regan and Doncaster. I dont think they have the guts or the vision to revolutionize (which less face it is really what is needed) the league structure from top to bottom. Esp, if they decide to bend over backwards to help one of the precious OF

  • Comment number 67.

    This is so typical of this whole farcical episode. Still no decision from the first tax case, never mind all the later issues. When are the authorities and courts going to do their job, hear evidence and give judgement.

    As for punishment, it's quite simple, it's the one in place when you were charged. You can't charge someone with an offence, then say we'll give judgement after we've changed the penalty.

    Any so called newco, would actually be a new non - league football club. There is no way you can, or should be allowed to enter at the highest level. I am a Rangers fan, if owners & boards have broken the rules & incurred unpayable debts. Then as usual, same as others, the club & its fans will have to suffer the consequences. Same laws & punishments must apply to everyone, can't have one law for the rich another for the poor.

  • Comment number 68.

    And stop going on and on about either the OF in England

    NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN!!!!

  • Comment number 69.

    If Rangers go into liquidation they should receive the same punishment as Gretna, nothing more nothing less. The rules may be changed at the end of April but is this not for the new season?

  • Comment number 70.

    @61 Brianwr

    Don't worry mate there is a fair chance you'll be watching 1st division games anyway next year :-). The whole thing is a shambles. If rangers go into liquidation they are a new company and a new entity - they should not be punished for the old rangers actions just like they won't have the old rangers debts.

    Additionally, they have no right to stay in the SPL if they start again so should be sent to division 3 - they are a new club with no trophies.

    If you want to keep your history and trophy record then pay your debts - simple.

    Rangers may have been the victim of bad advice with EBTs so i have some sympathy on that but this season they kept players they cannot afford (have doen for the past 2/3 seasons), deliberately avoided PAYE and were even trying to sign players a week or so before they went into administration.

    I'm afraid this really is starting to look like a stich up.

  • Comment number 71.

    @62 manchester bill ah was all going so well till u revealed ure inner true in the last paragraph !!!! from neither side of the fence i still adore that moment when a crushed suited, hair unkempt, michael kelly announced celtic had been saved by "the only swiss bank without a typewriter" immortal scottish football words. b careful what u wish for bhoy !!

  • Comment number 72.

    Rangers will get what Rangers want. At a recent Charity dinner an ex-Scottish professional player was asked about the Fraser Foster question. Namely that Aluko was banned for diving as he gained an advantage by cheating yet Foster scoops Wallaces shot from behind the line and no action was taken. His reply was that the SFA were reluctant to act as it was felt necessary to keep 'Celtic' sweet now that one half of the OF was in trouble.

  • Comment number 73.

    @72 ParSoup

    LOL don't make me laugh - "The Fraser Forster question" as if is is some great debate sweeping Scottish Football.

    Are you not a bit old for believing in fairy tales? Aluko dived - Forster was attempting to do his job he didn't set out to deliberately con anyone indeed he probably wasn't aware if the ball was over the line of not.

  • Comment number 74.

    For all the non old firm clubs supporters coming on here having a go at Rangers and Celtic, the reason you are so weak compared to the OF lies at the door of one man David Murray.

    The 1980s were a watershed in Scottish football, Celtic muddled along with some success, Aberdeen, DU and eventually Hearts became stronger teams and the first two had great success at home and Europe, Rangers were in the doldrums.

    Scottish football changed when David Murray took over Rangers and tried to buy European success, nobody could compete, Celtic nearly folded, then a resurgent, refinanced, unrecognizable stronger Celtic came back under O’Neil, Murray pressed the panic button and overstretched himself financially and possibly with double contracts.

    Celtic are a well run club with a massive support, it's not our fault that the reset of the SPL is so weak financially or in terms of supporters. The problem you have is Celtic and Rangers are simply so strong and have such a large supporter base. You would think this was unique but it's not, look at other smaller countries, Holland, Belgium, Portugal, all have the same problem as us of 2 or 3 big teams always dominating.

    I can understand why you don't want the OF, but I think the problem is a much because you are so weak and lack financial investment and it's unfair Celtic in particular are being singled because the Rangers mess is nothing to do with us. I would like Celtic to support change and I hope they will, I want an expanded league playing each other home and away with a possible split.

  • Comment number 75.

    I'm a Rangers supporter; have been for forty-odd years.
    I'd much rather a newco started again in SFL rather than accept the Tailor-made punishments the SPL is devising.
    What is the point of us competing with a wafer-thin squad, with points and financial penalties?
    In the SFL we'd be free from the shackles of the SPL gnomes' media deals, able to negotiate our own media rights deals, our thin squad would be adequate, our stadium no emptier, and the SFL (and its sponsors and its clubs' sponsors) would undoubtedly appreciate the extra interest and revenues.
    In fact, as Rangers would be dropping out of the SPL, and bottom club relegated, SFL may ask us to join the first division, as two clubs would be promoted from SFL1 to make up the numbers, and no club need suffer as a result. (The SPL is as powerless in SFL matters as is the converse.)

    Furthermore, it would have the advantageous side-effect of teaching the treacherous ten on which side their bread's buttered, and would hopefully put them back in their rightful supplicant place.

    Manchester Bill, what possible purpose has Celtic continued to serve, since its foundation, which isn't sectarian?
    Lord save us from the diaspora fanatics.

  • Comment number 76.

  • Comment number 77.

    If Rangers are liquidated and allowed back into the SPL then it is the death knell for Scottish Football and will confirm all that non-OF fans have been saying for many years.

    To all the English fans commenting on this thread about the lack of investment / poor quality of the Scottish game - the rise of the EPL and the money around at your lower league clubs is down to one man and that is Rupert Murdoch. Remember what the English game was like before the Sky money came in? At that time there was very little difference between the top Scottish and English clubs in terms of on the park quality. The English game is built on a financial bubble that won't last forever and your clubs will be in a similar mess to Scotland's when that the bubble bursts.

    And to those who laugh at our two horse race, the EPL is twice the size of ours in terms of clubs and funnily enough you have (at best) a four horse race. The phrase pots and kettles springs to mind!

  • Comment number 78.

    They play football in Scotland??

    I watch lots of PL and CL games but never realised it existed up there.

    Such is the appeal

  • Comment number 79.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 80.

    The timing of these new rules seems a bit suspicious - it sounds like the other spl clubs don't want rangers to be demoted but just want them to be handicapped for a while.

    Very True, it was clear since this blog was posted that non Rangers fans would want to see the club crippled, whilst the Rangers fans would obviously would want the club saved. The fact is Scotland needs a strong Rangers, without them clubs would lose revenue through lower gates, TV would not be interested without Old firm encounters, The game would change, and not for the better!

  • Comment number 81.

    IMO this will end in liquidation and it is clear the paths are being cleared for entry of newco to SPL but perhaps they will have nowhere to play!. If the assets of the club are +£100 m then would the taxman have a claim on these (ground etc). (Not an expert) If so they may go this option and get most of whats due than pennies in the pound. Also strange that Mr Romonov has not been ranting about his £800k

  • Comment number 82.

    77.At 15:48 12th Apr 2012, mrrossy wrote:

    Arsenal shouldn't suffer too much from a financial implosionin the EPL, they are self sustaining and not dependant on outside funding or a sugar daddy.

    Also the guy who owns Man City is essentially in charge of two sovereign wealth funds collectively worth a trillion pounds (thats a thousand billion).

    I think it might take some time for that money to run out.

    Rangers on the other hand were neither sulf sustaining or had a sugar daddy.

    The new rules on losses of a max £39m over 3 seasons cannot come quick enough for Arsenal.

  • Comment number 83.

    @75 Awbuzzin

    Then it would appear you are in the majority then as everyone else wants to see rangers down in the SFL as well if they don't pay what they owe.

    It really is such a grubby affair with all these unsecured creditors about to be stiffed for their money if rangers go into liquidation - what i find so appaling is that some rangers fans seem to be saying they want to leave the SPL if they are not allowed to stay on their own terms. Rangers are the ones who broke the rules here and lived beyond their means - nobody forced them to do it.

    As for double contracts that's a whole different agrument - if rangers (or anyone) is found to have fielded ineligible players and broke the rules that titles and trophies need to be stripped.

  • Comment number 84.

    Don't worry we all know the English game is now simply a plaything for the international rich and famous and is English in all but name.

    If and when sky pulls the plug you won't be so smug.

  • Comment number 85.

    "The fact is Scotland needs a strong Rangers, without them clubs would lose revenue through lower gates."

    Tosh! A newco will be back so the money will still be there. The point is who will get it. 3rd division clubs or SPL clubs? This is all about who gets the cash, nothing more.

    If i was a 3rd division chairman i would be in about the SFA everyday demanding they step in and get New rangers demoted to the third division.

  • Comment number 86.

    @73 coltseavers

    I wonder who you support - "Forster was attempting to do his job"

    Foster cheated and should have been dealt with accordingly. It is exactly your kind of blinkered bigotry that is part of Scottish footballs problem. I support Dunfermline and am fed up with this kind of preferential treatment for both sides of the OF.

    Its the constant bias towards the OF that are turning fans away not double contracts etc.

  • Comment number 87.

    For the people who believe the smaller clubs in the SFL will gain financially from Rangers playing in the lower leagues, your having a giggle.

    50 thousand Rangers fans wont attend pub league football, just wont happen, not in your wildest fantasy. Just a pity for the rest of Scotland, including Celtic, that the big hoose will be staying open in its current form.

  • Comment number 88.

    If liquidation becomes a reality then I would have no objection to Rangers being ousted from the SPL. In all honesty, I'd much rather start afresh from Division 3 (providing that the SFL member clubs vote the newco into the league) than have a 10 point deduction from the start of the next two seasons - which I can only assume would prevent the club from competing in Europe as it has done this season?

    I'm not clued up enough on the financial penalties that the club have and, in future, may face, but if we are to be punished I'd much rather start from scratch than be given a deduction, purely so that the rest of the clubs can get their 'fair' share of the SKY money. It's a ridiculous scenario whereby we could be pretty much out of the title race from August, but are kept in the league so we're on telly every fortnight.

    All the fans saying that we should apply to the lowest level of the English system need to get their heads checked out; we will not ever compete in the English Premier League, and even if it somehow became possible, how do you propose we qualify for UEFA competitions?

  • Comment number 89.

    Number 81

    Didnt Craig Whyte transfer Murray Park and Ibrox to a seperate company when he took over?

  • Comment number 90.

    I'm a Bluenose, however having lived south of the border for a long time, I can see both viewpoints. There are a number of considerations.. The notion that Rangers have "Cheated" is a bit much, financial irregularity in a business sense is far removed from cheating in the sporting sense, however.. The notion that other teams will suddenly have the chance of finding themselves playing Europes elite in the Champions league is also a fantasy - No disrespect intended but the reality is the SPL (Scottish Pub League) lacks the quality which would see our 3rd-6th placed teams compete in Europe. I direct you at recent seasons performance as evidence. The demise of Rangers will have a negative impact on all of scottish football, in particular the viewing public.. who wants to turn up every week to watch Celtic walk away unchallenged? Sky TV? That deal doesn't exist without Rangers, and then of course the dramatic lost gate receipts that Rangers (like it or not) generate. Sadly though I do think if Rangers go into liquidation, then starting in Division 3 is only right and fair for everyone. The worst part of all of this is that the people in charge at the SPubL have seized a moment in the limelight to act important, and I fear they will descend into farce as they try to unravel the chaos they are creating around them due to their ill-timed decision making process.

    I suppose the whole situation is a word of warning to all the other clubs out there.. after all, the Taxman knows that Rangers weren't the only ones using the tax avoidance methods.. Another point worth noting, Rangers have avoided tax, not evaded it, a world of difference in the eyes of the law as tax avoidance measures are not and never were illegal. "There but for the grace of god" Others may be saying right now.

  • Comment number 91.

    41 seriously believes England invented Football....awww bless.

  • Comment number 92.

    several others seriously believe Scottish teams are any good at playing the game.. awww bless ;-)

  • Comment number 93.

    @86 ParSoup

    Look you may disagree with me but do not accuse me of bigotry for suggesting a goalkeeper punching a ball that may have crossed the line was different from a player taking a dive.

    I sincerely hope it is just a case of you not actually knowing what the word means but one of the main problems in Scotland is relatively daft people accusing others of things that they don't understand.

    As for Forster getting punished - i genuinely find that ideal insane as any goalkeeper whould have done what he did. I also think to use the comments of an unamed ex pro after dinner speaker as evidence of some SFA cover up is naive but it's your opinion.

    Just try and keep it civil in future please.

  • Comment number 94.

    @87 and 91 gilly believes the big hoose will be stayin open in its current form....awww bless.

  • Comment number 95.

    @92 adunbar

    No or course we don't. We just go along out of habit and for the banter. We watch the premiership to see football in it's purest form.

  • Comment number 96.

    Unbelievable that 2 months into this fiasco the rangers support and some of the press think that Rangers are the aggrieved party. T hey owe you and me through the tax system perhaps if they made overtures to settle some of the debt the scottish fans would have more sympathy

  • Comment number 97.

    i am a Rangers fan born and bread in glasgow - the fourth most populated city in the uk. and firstly with regards to all the old firm bashing that seems to be going on it is not the old firms fault that this is the case, the majority of supporters are exactly the same as everyone else's, working class 9 til 5, it just so happens as i said they live in one of the most populated cities in the Britain.. which generates a fan base, which generates revenue and in turn...success!.

    Now secondly How ever the owner distributes the revenue generated is often the decision of 1 man. i thoroughly believe that more stringent rules should have been put in place far earlier with regards to financial fair play, and obviously the fit and proper persons check has to be overhauled. i believe these should be the more pressing matters rather than arguing about what punishment should be handed out to the clubs who are mismanaged by again, more often than not 1 man. (you would not be wrong in thinking that i am all for fan owned clubs).

    with regards to the spl/third devision row i often see comments made on how much better the spl would be without the old firm, i believe this is the perfect opportunity to let all those people see just how much better it would actually be (all be it with only rangers gone). i do believe however that Rangers should be allowed to stay in the spl, there is no point in punishing the rest of the clubs in the spl and thousands of working class fans because of the actions of David Murray and Craig Whyte. but as i say it would be a very interesting watch indeed to see how things would unfold were rangers to be relegated to the third division, and i dare say fans of spl clubs who wanted it to happen may be made to eat their words, if the of lack a poultry few thousands pounds is enough to cause ripples at dunfermline, an spl club. then who knows what could happen without the finance Rangers undoubtedly bring to the spl.

  • Comment number 98.

    @95 :-) Nice one.. Like it.

  • Comment number 99.

    It is a shame how comment threads always just descend into people taking pot-shots each other.
    ParSoup, how can you accuse of ColtSeavers of "blinkered bigotry" for having the opinion the Forster's save was a reflex things, and Aluko dived? Is there really any need for that? The keeper done what all keepers would do

  • Comment number 100.

    97. Makes a good point albeit indirectly.. The whole saga of Rangers began under David Murray - He is the only man apart from Craig Whyte who knows exactly what has gone on and maybe its time he came out and levelled with the public over the whole affair?? Naaa, I'm dreaming again..

 

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