Saturday, 11 February 2012
Success Breeds Success
Only the most short-sighted or stupid of Celtic fans would be cheered by the mess that their great Glasgow rivals - Rangers Football Club - find themselves in today.
The club acquired a new owner last year - Craig Whyte - who is mired in controversy - the latest issue being described in court by Sheriff Nigel Ross in the following terms:
"I reject the evidence of Mr Whyte as wholly unreliable.
It is not possible to ascertain whether he is not telling the truth or is simply unable to recollect the true position, and has convinced himself that this arrangement is something that he would not have entered into.
Either way, his evidence is contradicted by virtually every other piece of evidence."
Now that's a pretty devastating statement to make about a person who's in charge of a multi-million pound business.
And the sheriff's comments come on top of other serious allegations about Craig Whyte's track record in business - which have been well aired in the press and media.
Rangers have apparently taken out a big loan just to run the club's day-to-day affairs - on the back of the next three years' gate receipts.
So for the foreseeable future its most obvious source of income is already spoken for - which seems a very strange thing to do in the current economic climate.
Rangers are also currently embroiled in a law suit with the Inland Revenue - and face a bill of £49 million if the case goes against them - although to be fair this has nothing directly to do with the new owner - Craig Whyte.
But everyone I know is pretty certain that Rangers can't win this fight with the taxman - which means that the financial base of the club is on a very shoogly - or shaky - peg.
And that brings me back to my first point - which is that this is not good for Glasgow.
Since the city's two big clubs - Celtic and Rangers - have always thrived and been at their best when trying to match or catch up with one another's success - both on and off the field.
So if I were a Rangers fan - I'd be asking for an Extraordinary General Meeting of the club to find out exactly what the hell's going on.