The end of the beginning: Weatherseal to save Newco?
‘Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the bitch that bore him is in heat again.’
– Bertolt Brecht
With the announcement yesterday that HMRC will reject the Rangers CVA proposal, and that liquidators will shortly be appointed to bring to an end the history of Glasgow Rangers Football Club, Scottish Football is set to enter a critical stage in it’s history.
HMRC has done its part, ignoring the political interference and forcing the club into liquidation for not paying the tax, paying for hospital beds, and teachers salaries that it would have supported. However, it is now the turn of the SPL, the SFA, and the eleven remaining Scottish Premier League club chairman (and bizarrely, a liquidated Rangers get to vote too!) to hold up their end of the bargain. On Monday, the SPL is likely to become the first league ever to include a club in liquidation in its fixture list. There will be an outcry from the Rangers fans, from the Blue Knights, from Brian Kennedy to allow Sevco Utd, or whoever prizes the assets out of the liquidators BDO, to allow New-Rangers into the SPL to continue where they left off (presumably signing players they can’t afford and have no intention of ever paying for).
So, in the weeks leading up-to that decision, who does the SPL go and in-debt itself too? Well, a company called ‘Weatherseal’ has become one of it’s new title sponsors. Who, you ask, and what is relevant about this. Well, dig a little deeper, and you’ll find Weatherseal is owned by none other than, yep, Brian Kennedy – a prominent member of the Blue Knight/Major bidder for the assets. Weatherseal was bought for the pricely sum of 350,000GBP (itself, in liquidation) in 1993, and while Kennedy has not been on the board of directors since 2010, his companies are the majority shareholders.
Now, having Campbell Oglive on the SFA board is one conflict of interest, but surely, having a company owned by one of the likely petitioners of the New-Gers is bordering on the extreme.
We’ve already had the Sky TV reasons for keeping ‘A Rangers’ in the SPL… I give it two weeks before we hear the ‘we have to let them in otherwise we’ll lose our main sponsors’ arguments.
When this mess become public back in February, all we thought was going to come out was that Rangers owed the best part of 50 million in tax. That was enough for RTC to be calling for their expulsion from the game. Since then, we’ve had:
1) 18 million worth of PAYE not paid. 2) Debt owed to Hearts, Celtic, Dundee Utd, Rapid Vienna amongst others; 3) Four years of season tickets sold off to Ticketus; 4) Trying to sign players whilst in administration (Daniel Cousin anyone); 5) An administration that saw the redundancy of ZERO employees; 6) A transfer ban, subsequently appealed through the courts; 7) The interest of FIFA in the matter; 8) A war correspondent from C4 becoming deeply involved; 9) An American bidder who was run out of town; 10) McCoist publicly having names of disciplinary committees published so the Rangers mob could try and run them out of town; 11) a CVA proposal offering 1p in the Pound, while the bidder was talking about a 30million transfer budget, signing players from the Euro’s and now Rino Gattuso was set to sign (despite a transfer ban and being in administration; 12) the CVA proposal saying all season ticket money and player sales would go to Green, and not the creditors; 13) The SPL allowing a Newco Rangers to have a vote on whether they get into the SPL or not! 14) NOT ONE HINT OF AN APOLOGY FROM ANY RANGERS FAN, SUPPORTER, FORMER DIRECTOR OR PLAYER.
And it is that last sentence that should ensure come any vote for a NewGers that the SPL chairman say NO. We are not at the end of this saga yet. We are simply at the end of the beginning. The real fun starts now.
HMRC did their part. Now, for the sake of Scottish football, the 11 chairmen must do likewise.
There will be twists and turns, and WTF moments to come – we all have to stay strong, and repeat over and over again.