What Now for Rangers?

Posted on February 16, 2012

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What Next for Rangers?

As Rangers finally enter into Administration what does the future hold for one of Scotland’s oldest and biggest football clubs?

 

By David Marshall

 

A stunned silence fell over the football community in Britain when Rangers filed their intention to go into Administration on the 13th February 2012. The very next day the club appointed their own administrators and The Rangers Football Club PLC, a football club with 140 years worth of history, were now officially in administration.

Owner Craig Whyte read a statement outside the front doors of Ibrox conforming administration in front of a crowd of angry fans. Supporters are now left pondering where their beloved team go from here.

In the short term, Rangers have been deducted 10 points by the SPL that now leaves them in a almost impossible position to win the league being 14 points behind rivals Celtic.

In the long term, fans are worried about the leadership of the club mainly Craig Whyte. When Whyte bought Rangers in May of last year he came in under a wave of optimism. A third successive league title had been won in weeks of him joining the club and Rangers seemed to be financially secure for the time being.

However, some fans now doubt that Whyte is the man to lead Rangers forward. Supporters feel that Whyte has failed to prove he has the financial backing necessary to move Rangers out of this difficult period. Fans also feel that they have been lied to and kept in the dark about just how severe the financial situation is, with the club’s accounts from the 2011 financial year still yet to be signed off. Whyte is quickly finding out that the quickest way to lose the faith of the fans is to lie to them.

The bad news for Whyte and the worry for Rangers fans continued to build when it emerged that Rangers have failed to pay over £9M in taxes since Craig Whyte took charge of the club.

When questioned wither or not Craig Whyte is the right man to lead Rangers out of this difficult time Mark Dingwall, Spokesperson for the Rangers Supporters Trust said; “At this time it is difficult to tell through such uncertainty but no, he doesn’t look he his is”.

As fans desperately look for some sort of miracle to save the club a name that has emerged is Paul Murray. Murray was a director of the club when Sir David Murray was owner. Murray has said he is looking to talk to the administrators to find out how much it would cost to buy the club. He has stressed however that he would not be able to buy the club on his own. Murray is hoping to form a “Blue Knights” group to place a consortium bid and ride to the rescue of the club.

Some Fans have welcomed the news of Murray’s intention to buy the club whereas others remain sceptical about man who was so closely imbedded in the David Murray regime.

Mark Dingwall said, “The trust will be looking to talk to Paul Murray to hear his plans”.

He added; “ It is extremely unhealthy for one man to run the club. Mistakes must be learned from when Sir David Murray ran the club”.

“In the past fans have felt that the owner has had no alliance with the average fan or no direct coalition with supporters, this is something that must change for the club to move forward”.

Alastair Johnston, a former chairman of the club, has called for Sir David Murray and the Murray Group to buy back the club from Craig Whyte. An idea that would not be too popular with supporters as many resent Sir David for his role in the club’s financial downfall. It is fair to say that the return of Sir David would not be hailed as the second coming of the messiah.

Sir David himself has commented on Rangers going into administration saying that he was “surprised” to find the club in such a state. A surprising statement from the man who set up the Employee Benefit Trusts that have put Rangers into hot water with HMRC and the man who ran up the debt to Lloyds bank. Sir David was clearly not the only one who was “surprised”.

Mark Dingwall described the former owner’s comments as “disappointing” and commented on Sir David Murray buying the club back; “Morally it could be argued that it is the right thing for him to do, he caused the mess and he should pay for it”.

Whatever the future holds for Rangers it is clear that a bumpy road lies ahead. However, there is some good news. Duff and Phelps, the company that have been appointed administrators by the club have ensured fans that whatever happens Rangers will always exist.

Mark Dingwall also remains confident that Rangers can come through this difficult time; “Very tough times are ahead, Rangers are blessed with having a magnificent history and fantastic support. Hopefully, we will come out the other side of this stronger than ever”.

HOW THE FANS REACTED

 

 Craig Patterson, 19, Beith, Student

I was totally gutted to hear the news but I am quietly confident we will come out this tough period a stronger team and club in general.

 

Martin MacInnes, 28, Fort William, Student

I feel betrayed, I know Whyte is a businessman but he claims to be a bear yet he lies about things and then uses the “I’m hurting too, I’m a bear too” line which sometimes I feel is another lie.

Craig Hepburn, 18, Linwood, Barman

Disappointed at what has happened but I still remain confident that there is light at the end of the tunnel and that Craig Whyte is trying his best to sort out the problems.

Ian Nicol, 27, Thurso, Document Controller

We all knew this day was coming we knew that Murray was up to no good. Some fans may say that Murray was great for Rangers and a savior; I think they’re all talking a load of nonsense.

Robert Sinclair, 44, Linwood, Postman

If Whyte gets his way it will be liquidation as, in my opinion, he is in it for himself and has not got Rangers at heart. He is a crook and a liar.

Craig Carmyllie, 17, Linwood, Student

Murray has to take a big part of the blame for the mess we are in just now but also the other board members around at that time who stood by and watched him do this have to take responsibility, the name that springs to mind is Martin Bain.


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