Tag: Rangers

“The Boys From The West Of Scotland Don’t Scare Easily”: Rangers At War

It comes to something when John Brown produces the most prescient analysis of your football club’s fortunes. Last summer, the ex-Rangers man told anyone who wanted to listen (and a fair few who didn’t) that he knew “what’s going on” at Rangers, in the early days of no-nonsense Yorkshireman Charles Green’s lively leadership. “What do you know, John?” an increasingly exasperated Scotsman newspaper journalist Tom English asked time-and-again on BBC Scotland’s Sportsound ten months later. “I know what’s going on,” said Brown, every time. Brown still knows what’s going on. And it has dawned on Scotland’s mainstream media that whatever the attractions of the latest “Ibrox civil war,” Brown made the real point: “The money is disappearing like you can’t imagine.” It seems more than a week since Rangers CEO Craig Mather sought “clarification for our fans” over the SFA Disciplinary Tribunal decision not to fine Heart of Midlothian for entering administration, when Rangers received the maximum £50,000 fine for the offence last year. Mather’s claim that “there is one rule for our club and another for everyone else” was demonstrable nonsense. But it was for a reason, as a day later an Extraordinary General Meeting of shareholders was requisitioned to force his and two other directors’ removal from the board. And after days of executive name-calling by leading Rangers ‘personalities, fans themselves sought clarification on “what’s going on”...

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Leitch, The 1902 Ibrox Disaster & The Changing Values Of Safety

Football and architecture have seldom been happy bedfellows. During their prime the homes of British football were woefully under-appreciated, and this lack of attention has been mirrored over the last two decades with many grounds that meant a lot to thousands of people having been demolished and replaced with new structures that owe little to the history of the game and which will doubtlessly, in the fullness of time, be replaced themselves with newer and shinier structures. Yet the architecture of the football stadium in Britain is part of our landscape, and its shape is instantly recognisable, even if it is starting to die out, at least in the sense in which many of us remember it. Of all the people that have been involved in the construction of these icons of twentieth century Britain, one name above all others stands out, that of an architect and engineer whose designs were as instantly recognisable as could be imagined. Archibald Leitch was born in Glasgow in 1865, the son of a blacksmith. Brought up in the Camlachie area of the East End of the city and a stone’s throw from Celtic Park, he was grammar school educated and is believed to have travelled extensively before returning to the city in 1890, becoming a member of the Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland six years later. The tail end of...

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Escape To Liquidity: Charles Green, Rangers & The English League System

It wasn’t, in the overall scheme of things, the most auspicious way in which a club could win a league title, but Rangers’ goalless draw at Montrose yesterday afternoon coupled with Queens Park’s one-nil home defeat at the hands of Elgin City meant that the Glasgow giants have now been confirmed as the champions of the Scottish Football League Division Three. Yet the atmosphere of distrust remains as prevalent as it ever has in Scottish football and this morning, the day after the lifting of the trophy at Links Park, a further story linking Rangers and Celtic with a move into the English league system has appeared with reports that the Prime Minister, David Cameron, “is ­taking a ­‘massive interest’” in seeing both of the Glasgow giants obtain entry to English football, reportedly for political reasons relating to the forthcoming referendum in Scotland concerning independence. This isn’t, of course, the first time that such a suggestion has been mentioned but the door has always been considered shut to the prospect of Celtic and Rangers joining the English game. Since Rangers’ fall from grace, the placing of the club into Division Three of the Scottish Football League and the decision to remould Scottish football into a 12-12-18 formation, though, the noises from Ibrox have started to reach a fever pitch, with a steady stream of articles from Scottish newspapers suggesting...

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Rangers & The SPL Commission’s Verdict

BBC Scotland’s senior football reporter Chris McLaughlin broke the news that Rangers would not be stripped of Scottish Premier League (SPL) titles by an SPL Independent Commission an hour before its findings were formally released on Thursday. The initial reaction from delighted Rangers fans was that their club was exonerated by the Commission of any breach of SPL rules in their registration of players paid partly through Employee Benefit Trusts (EBTs). Yet before that pre-release hour was out, it was clear that the opposite was true. Rangers were guilty of just about everything thrown at them. And the Commission’s report condemned the conduct of the club’s directors and representatives between 2000 and 2012. Yet Rangers’ fans’ sense of victory is undiminished. How so? McLaughlin rightly identified the “agenda”; fellow-journalists looking for a “sexy” story from 40-odd pages of legalese, fans of other clubs (mostly, though not exclusively, Celtic, for obvious if hardly responsible reasons) and Rangers’ fans, apparently happy to take any condemnation (which is just as well) to keep their titles. So journalists have focused on the non-title-stripping. The “mostly Celtic fans” (categorised as “anti-Rangers haters” by one confused tweeter recently) have scratched their collective heads at how Rangers could improperly register players for years and not receive the sporting sanction usually applied in such cases. And Rangers fans have interrupted their cheering long enough to say “time...

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