Saints without Rangers: So No Armageddon then?
I wrote a few months ago about the affect Rangers not being in our league would have on Saints finances. Since then a lot has happened, and a club called Sevco Scotland* pretending to be Rangers are playing in the 3rd division of Scottish Football. So, I hear you ask, what has happened to Armageddon and six clubs going bankrupt?
*Sevco Scotland Ltd were last Friday night given a conditional license to play football by the SFA. Yesterday (31st July) Sevco 5088 Ltd changed their name to The Rangers Football Club Ltd, so, as far as I am concerned, Sevco FC play in Division 3. I’m not sure where The Rangers FC play as they don’t have a license. Understand? No? Join the club. That’s for another blog!
Well, not a great deal really. Saints are so confident they are still adding strikers to the squad, with Rowan Vine joining yesterday after scoring twice in a friendly against Bristol City at the weekend. He could be joined by Preston’s Jamaican striker Keammar Daley shortly. Meanwhile, while Rangers were playing about with their business names, the SPL’s Neil Doncaster was outdoing himself in signing a new TV deal with SKY for 13,000,000.
Is that all I hear you cry? What about the Norwegian deals?
Well, lets put that to one side – we already know he’s not the best negotiator, so what does 13,000,000 mean for Scottish football, and Saints in particular?
If you read back to my original article, I estimated the TV deal would reduce from the 18,000,000 that was due to start next season, by 33% (using a report from PWC that said Rangers and Celtic were worth 66% of Scottish Football). That would have left a 12,000,000 TV deal, so i wasn’t far off! However, our deal right now was worth 15,000,000, so that leaves us with a reduction of just 2,000,000.
That’s it. 2,000,000. For a league without Rangers.
Let’s look at how that affects my calculations. Just to remind you, with a prize pot of 15,000,000, this is how the money paid to each league position would look.
Let’s now reduce that by 2,000,000 and see where we are. As you can see, Saints 6th place last season would have seen us get about 1.1m. A similar finish this season would get us 975k. A loss of 150k, about 100k less than I estimated before.
However, that doesn’t give the real picture. There is two important factors that we haven’t discussed;
1) Rangers not being in the league should allow us to finish one place higher. After all, Club 12 are going to be Dundee and we really shouldn’t get beaten by a team that has Carl Finnigan leading the line.
2) Reports are already saying that the split is being renegotiated so positions 3 – 12 will lose just 100k, with Celtic and the club finishing 2nd losing the most.
So, taking this into account, assuming a 5th place finish next season the prize money would look like this,
As you can now see, a Rangerless SPL means Saints would be just 25,000 GBP worse off, with regards TV income. We will now take this figure and bump it into the gate loss from Rangers fans. Just to remind you, the gate loss estimated without Rangers was 117k, based on taking the yearly average attendance and calculating the increase in attendance when Rangers come to town.
This makes the total estimated loss, thanks to Rangers not being around, to be as follows:
As you can see, a total shortfall of 142k can be made up in a few ways. 1. sell more season tickets, or 2. get more paying customers through the gate. If Saints can attract just 396 fans per game extra, spending 20gbp each, we will make as much money this season as we did last.
So come on Saintees… get out there, by your season tickets, and spread the word on what a fantastic deal Scottish Football is this year, especially for families. Armageddon is not going to happen. Let’s show the SFA/SPL that we don’t need Rangers or any other club to survive. Let’s show them that this was the moment Scottish football was reborn and thrived.