Rangers Football Club enters administration

 

Rangers fans give their reaction to the news the club is in administration

Rangers Football Club has entered administration - meaning it has been docked 10 points, effectively ending its Scottish Premier League challenge.

The club appointed London firm Duff and Phelps as administrators at 14:50.

The move followed an unsuccessful legal bid by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) at the Court of Session in Edinburgh to appoint its own administrator.

HMRC lodged its petition over alleged non-payment of about £9m in PAYE and VAT following Craig Whyte's takeover.

Mt Whyte confirmed on Monday that the club had filed legal papers to appoint administrators. He insisted Rangers would "come out stronger" and "always be here".

Joint administrators

It was initially thought that the club had 10 days to make a decision on whether to proceed, but the HMRC action on Tuesday changed the dynamic of the situation.

Start Quote

Administration news conference

All stakeholders involved with Rangers are working hard to ensure the long-term future of this national institution”

End Quote Paul Clark Joint administrator

Paul Clark and David Whitehouse from Duff and Phelps were later appointed as joint administrators and take over the day-to-day running of Rangers while addressing its massive debt problems.

Mr Clark said: "HMRC have been working closely with the club in recent months to achieve a solution to the club's difficulties. However, this has not been possible due to ongoing losses and increased tax liabilities that cannot be sustained.

"We are working together with management and its major creditors, including HMRC, to achieve a solution to the financial problems which will ensure the ongoing survival of the business, which is of paramount importance to all concerned.

"We would like to take the opportunity of thanking the fans for all their past and present support and hope we can rely on them in the future.

"Rangers has a long and proud sporting tradition - one we all wish to see continue. All stakeholders involved with Rangers are working hard to ensure the long-term future of this national institution."

Start Quote

Rangers will always be here as I've said before”

End Quote Craig Whyte Rangers owner

Following Tuesday morning's legal case, a spokesman for HMRC said: "We can't discuss specific cases for legal reasons but tax that has been deducted at source from the wages of players and support staff such as ground keepers and physios, must be paid over to HMRC.

"Any business that fails to meet that basic legal requirement puts the survival of the business at risk."

In a statement, Mr Whyte said the HMRC's move meant the club had to "accelerate" its plans.

He added: "The administrators are in today and looking at everything and I will work with them to help them all that I can and we'll have a plan to get out of administration by CVA [Creditors Voluntary Agreement] process as quickly as we possibly can.

"Rangers will always be here as I've said before. We will come out stronger and come out a better business and most importantly in a position to put as good a team as we can on the pitch and to win trophies which is what we all want as Rangers fans."

Sir David Murray Sir David Murray said he was "hugely disappointed" at Rangers' plight

Former Rangers owner Sir David Murray said he was "hugely disappointed" at the club's decision to appoint administrators and expressed surprise at the timing of the decision.

Sport Minister Shona Robison said Rangers' current plight was "a concerning situation for everyone involved in Scottish football".

She said: "Football is our national game and it is now for the administrators to take forward the process of assessing the business and securing an outcome in the best interests of the club, its staff, supporters and the game of football as a whole in Scotland."

Financial storm

Meanwhile, Strathclyde Police said it had now resolved issues over payment for policing which may have affected Rangers home game against Kilmarnock on Saturday.

A force statement said: "We have had a positive meeting with the administrators and received assurances about payment for the provision of police services at this weekend's match.

"We are working with the club and planning for the game as normal."

The financial storm engulfing Rangers has several fronts.

Craig Whyte Craig Whyte is believed to be Rangers' secured creditor

Mr Whyte has acknowledged that the club has a £10m deficit in annual running costs.

It was reported last week that the chairman had also borrowed up to £24m against four years of future season ticket revenue from Ticketus.

Most serious of all, Rangers awaits a tax tribunal decision over a disputed bill, plus penalties, totalling £49m.

Mr Whyte was reported on Monday as saying this potential liability to HMRC could reach up to £75m if the club lost the tribunal.

HMRC believes the Ibrox club owes cash over its use of Employment Benefit Trusts (EBTs) to pay staff over a 10-year period.

It alleges the Ibrox club did not administer the scheme properly and underpaid tax.

Rangers disputes this and has contested the claim in a first tier tax tribunal, which is due to report within weeks.

After the club signalled its intention to go into administration on Monday, Mr Whyte said the best outcome would be to reach a creditors agreement which would allow the club to continue trading.

Secured creditor

Mr Whyte is believed to be a secured creditor of Rangers and would have to be paid first ahead of others such as HMRC.

However, if HMRC holds 25% or more of the club's debt it can block a creditors agreement which is necessary for Rangers to exit administration.

If a creditors agreement cannot be reached - and if the club cannot be sold - it is possible that Rangers could be wound up.

The ramifications for the Scottish game, if this happened, would be far-reaching.

It is likely that existing TV deals, which provide significant revenue streams for Scottish clubs, would be scaled back or in extreme cases cancelled.

The absence of Rangers fans at other grounds in Scotland would also reduce revenue to competitor clubs.

 

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  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 154.

    Rangers have done what the banks have done....gambled on the future being one of continual growth and prosperity.
    You would have thought that someone would have seen the problems ahead......but reality does not always take presidence when ego and the allure of increasing wealth cloud your vision.
    Time to pay the piper.

  • rate this
    -9

    Comment number 153.

    I am sad to say that this might be the end of Scotish football as we know it.
    A club that has an average attendance of 40000+ should not be in this position. About time Celtic and Rangers entered the EPL. We canot see a football club like Rangers go down
    YNWA

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 152.

    138.Donald Unpleasance

    There's loads of words for that kind of behaviour, prejudice, intolerance, bias, narrow-mindedness, discriminatory, there are probably more but that's all I can think of for now.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 151.

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahhahahahaha!!!!

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 150.

    122, you must be joking! If Scotland was daft enough to break up the UK, the Scottish tax staff would all be ex-HMRC staff. Rangers (and Portsmouth?) need to go to the wall to make the point that taxes must be paid.
    138, not all Rangers fans are bigots, but a far too significant amount are. Scotland can live without this "institution" no matter what they or their supporters think.

  • rate this
    -7

    Comment number 149.

    Bad for football. End of.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 148.

    At the first sign of debt, alarm bells should have been ringing. How the hell did it go so badly wrong without noone noticing, or worse turning a blind eye. Someone in management, or all of the committee must be called to account on this one. Don`t be saddled with a whitewash.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 147.

    This is only the start. Premier League clubs are next.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 146.

    Hey Folks,
    It's just a bunch of guys kicking a spherical object around.
    If this is the be all, and end all of your life.
    You don't have a life!

  • rate this
    +9

    Comment number 145.

    A lot of negative comments about HMRC. I wanted to point out that there is a precedent with this type of case. Exactly the same thing happened with Arsenal a few years ago, using EBT's to pay players and they didn't dispute the case, they just paid the bill.
    It only seems fair that if one club has to pay, then all other clubs using this payment system should also pay.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 144.

    120 louby

    Is it not also about time that fans should also take some responsibility? For a long time fans have been pre-occupied with players and transfer dealings. The majority of fans of all clubs want to splash the cash in search of glory. Maybe, Arsenal have won the biggest trophy of all...A debt free club, new stadium, where only 29% of turnover is spent on wages.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 143.

    "just a case of not being silly enough to spend what you don't have"

    Aha... there's an awful lot of it about.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 142.

    Rangers have I believe a £10m deficit in their annual running costs. They also allegedly owe HMRC upteen millions. It sure isn't going to get any better given that there are only two sell out games in the Scottish Premier League in any given season. Far from a perfect business model. Reality check for Football? Too much money going to too few people?

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 141.

    Let them go they won't be missed. Next stop Portsmouth

  • rate this
    -6

    Comment number 140.

    The glory hunters out there will be laughing at Rangers tonight. They'll laugh knowing that without RFC in the picture they'll have more chance of lifting the cup. Sadly for them, without Rangers, there is no SPL. Who's going to sponsor a game between Celtic and Motherwell? Where's the money going to come from. This is a sad day and the beginning of the end for Scottish football.

  • Comment number 139.

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

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 138.

    100. andy235234
    To the people labelling all Rangers fans as bigots:
    I believe there's a name for unfairly attributing a negative characteristic to a whole group of people. Can you guess what it is?
    //////
    Bigotry?

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 137.

    So if these EBT's meant no-one paid tax or NI on the earnings then surely all the people who benfited the former players will now as true supporters of the club and Rangers Legends volunteer to pay back the tax and NI now and save the club they love so much as evidenced by their repeated badge kissing... aye right.

  • rate this
    +12

    Comment number 136.

    The incredible thing is that Rangers appear still to be in denial. Today they took on a player on £7,500 a WEEK. That despite owing other Scottish clubs money. This is unnacceptable behaviour. I remember the great Rangers team of Jim Baxter who played for the jersey and not as they are today, prima dona's who have bimbo's and flash cars.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 135.

    Why don't Celtic buy Rangers and then merge the teams and bury the axe!

    A win-win all round for all the fans and they could cut costs too!

    Cheers!

 

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