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  1. ...snubbing bids to help sacked Scots workers. RANGERS shareholder Mike Ashley has been accused of deplorable behaviour after he repeatedly rebuffed attempts by ministers to offer help to warehouse employees who his firm had abruptly made redundant. Business Minister Fergus Ewing has expressed "extreme concern and disappointment" at the conduct of Mr Ashley's Sports Direct, the parent company of clothing chain USC which the billionaire allowed to go into administration this month costing 88 employees their jobs at its base in Dundonald, Ayrshire. It has emerged that the Scottish Government made a series of urgent but unsuccessful attempts to contact bosses and offer help to the employees, leading an MSP to question whether Mr Ashley was a fit and proper person to own Rangers. It is understood that representatives from PACE - a Scottish Government initiative which offers advice to workers made redundant - travelled to the warehouse after attempts to make contact with company bosses were ignored but were denied access to the site to speak directly with employees for several days. Workers are believed to have not been offered redundancy pay from the firm, while some are owed cash dating back to mid-December. Sports Direct representatives also refused to return phone calls from the highest levels of the Scottish Government. Despite Mr Ewing writing to Mr Ashley and requesting an immediate response, he only received an acknowledgement of his letter. Scottish Enterprise chief executive Lena Wilson also attempted to make contact with Mr Ashley before Dave Forsey, the CEO of Sports Direct, wrote to Mr Ewing on January 14, a week after the first attempts to make contact with the firm, confirming that USC had been put into administration. Ms Wilson received no response, despite numerous attempts to follow-up her letter. MSP Adam Ingram, whose constituency includes the Dundonald warehouse, accused Mr Ashley of showing "complete contempt" for his employees. "He's got £10 million in his pocket to try and take control of Rangers but he won't pay his workers wages they are due or make any redundancy payments," he said. "He's refused to respond to the minister when he's been trying to get help for the workforce, who only found out they were losing their jobs when nine Sports Direct container lorries arrived to strip the warehouse of stock. "It's deplorable behaviour and calls in to question whether Mike Ashley is a fit and proper person to own a football club according to the SFA rules. He is not someone I would want taking over any Scottish institution given how he's treated these workers." It has been confirmed that another of Mr Ashley's subsidiaries, Republic, has bought USC from administrators. The entrepreneur, who also owns Newcastle United, this week pocketed £117m after selling a 2.6 per cent stake in Sports Direct. According to Forbes magazine, Ashley, who owns just under 10 per cent of Rangers shares but wields a huge amount of power at the club, is worth £3.3billion making him the 293rd richest person in the world. A response to a parliamentary question reveals the PACE team was urgently trying to make contact with the firm throughout January 7, when news of the redundancies broke. Mr Ewing's office and PACE made repeated attempts to contact the company the following day by email and phone with no success, while the issue was also raised on First Minister's Questions. Mr Ewing wrote to Mr Forsey the following day, before Scottish Enterprise began efforts to make contact with a senior figure at Sports Direct and appeals were sent directly to Mr Ashley. After the attempts to contact Sports Direct were unsuccessful, PACE representatives travelled to Dundonald on January 8 where they spoke with representatives and left 150 copies of a guide for affected employees. They were eventually allowed on-site to give presentations to workers on January 13. A motion lodged at the Scottish Parliament by Mr Ingram, which condemns the actions of Mr Ashley and calls on him to ensure employees are paid what they are owed has so far attracted support from 22 other MSPs. Sports Direct declined to comment. http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/h...rker.116682728
  2. Not much yet, but here we go ... Rest later or from behind the pay wall of The Sun
  3. Grant Russell ‏@STVGrant 17s18 seconds ago None of the 55 games Steve Simonsen is accused of betting on were Rangers matches. Chris Jack ‏@Chris_Jack89 47s48 seconds ago Rangers keeper Steve Simonsen issued with a notice of complaint for breaching SFA gambling rules. Has until 29/1 to respond. Hearing 12/2
  4. Guest

    A poem for our time

    A POEM FOR OUR TIME If Rabbie Burns lived in our time, there is a good chance he would be a football supporter. As an Ayrshireman, tax inspector and a Mason, there is a good chance he would support the Gers. Wee sleekit cowran TIMrous beasties, O' what a panic's in thy breasties, Ye needna gang awa so hasty, Big match coming up, very tasty, Yees tried to knock us oot, but we're still here, Yees canny run, yees canny hide,yees can only fear.
  5. Surprised nobody posted this for a wee bit of footy chat amidst the boardroom and financial chaos. Our old pal Craig Thomson, the news just keeps getting better!
  6. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/jack-irvine-paul-murrays-more-5015233? THE Easdales have launched an astonishing attack on Paul Murray, mocking the former Rangers director and questioning his commitment to the club. A statement released by Jack Irvine, family adviser to the Ibrox club’s major shareholders, hits back at Murray for speaking out against the current regime in today’s Record Sport and savages him for being part of the board when former chairman David Murray sold the club to Craig Whyte for £1. Irvine said: “ So like an episode of The Living Dead, Paul Murray emerges from his borders lair having vowed never to return. He says he expects a smear campaign against himself and Dave King and in the same breath compares the Rangers board to Gerald Ratner. Hypocritical? You decide. “If Mr Murray and Mr King ever do get anywhere near the club they are welcome to carry out a robust financial investigation. The Easdale brothers have never taken a penny from the club and nor have they claimed any expenses. “One begins to wonder if we are not dealing with Paul McKenna as opposed to Paul Murray who appears to have hypnotised himself and his cohorts into obliterating the memory fact that they sold their beloved club for one pound. Rangers men? You decide.” In fact, former Deutsche Bank executive Murray launched an eleventh hour bid to persuade former David Murray against the Whyte deal. Forecasting the liquidation crisis which just over a year later brought the Glasgow giants to their knees, he said at the time: "In my opinion, Craig Whyte has not adequately demonstrated what his strategy is for managing and funding a negative outcome on this matter."
  7. Latest Mohsni incident... http://www.football411.com/story/0,22162,14340_27179,00.html
  8. The day I take lessons from Easdale on what is and isn't in the best interests of Rangers, there'll be proper fiscal responsibility in Ibrox. Can it be that even after everything he doesn't grasp how detested he is? He lost his right to tell fans what is in Rangers best interests when he started hocking the club off to Mike Ashley. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-30922826 Rangers director Sandy Easdale has said police are investigating threats made against him amid the ongoing and acrimonious battle for the Ibrox club. Officers are believed to be monitoring his home after internet posts allegedly urged fans to attack his house in a bid to remove him from the club. Mr Easdale, 47, said he had also received threats by email and letter. Last week, several hundred fans protested outside Ibrox stadium against the current Rangers board. In a statement released to the BBC, Mr Easdale said: "I have received several threats that are now in the hands of the authorities and I am confident that Police Scotland will get to the bottom of this. 'Violence and intimidation' "I appreciate that feelings are running high but I would like to make an appeal for calm. "This sort of behaviour is not in the best interests of the club, its shareholders or its true supporters." Mr Easdale said members of the Rangers board had been "subjected to an unprecedented level of abuse". "People are entitled to air their views but I hope that all parties will agree that violence and intimidation are unacceptable," he said. "All I want to see is the best possible outcome for Rangers." Police Scotland said it did not comment on operational details. Various fans groups have voiced opposition to the Rangers board for some time amid ongoing financial problems. It is understood that the club cannot pay this month's wage bill and needs immediate funding. A £10m loan has been offered by Mike Ashley, the owner of Sports Direct and Newcastle United, who holds an 8.92% stake in Rangers International Football Club - the football club's holding company. In return, Mr Ashley wants security over Ibrox stadium and its Murray Park training complex - a move that has enraged some fans who say the stadium should never be in danger of being taken away from the club's control. About 600 supporters demonstrated before and after the club's abandoned Championship game against Hearts on Friday. Following reports of disturbances, police arrested one man and said they expected to make more arrests after studying CCTV footage.
  9. The Rangers Supporters Trust (RST) is delighted to announce that, following a successful meeting yesterday, the Rangers Fans Fighting Fund (RFFF) has thrown its considerable finances and influence behind the RST's continuing fight to ensure Ibrox remains under the control of the club. We are delighted that the RFFF has taken this decision and would like to thank them for doing so. There is now a substantial legal fund available, should it be required, to fight any attempt by this board to pass security over Ibrox to Mike Ashley. We will work closely with the RFFF going forward to ensure every avenue is explored. http://www.therst.co.uk/news/rst-gains-rfff-support-for-ibrox-legal-fight/
  10. On Sky Sports a bit earlier, you can skip the first 1.30 odd mins as it is about Easdale's spokesman and his comments on Paul Murray Chris Graham on SSN and Irvine's comments noted Well spoken of Chris Graham and the more people are being made aware of the distrust between the support and the board plus Ashley, the better.
  11. Wednesday, 21 January 2015 14:00 Youths Draw With Falkirk Written by Rangers Football Club IAN DURRANT took the reigns of the Rangers under-20 side for the first time yesterday afternoon in a goalless draw against Falkirk at Murray Park. It was the first game back for the under-20 side since the League shut down over the Christmas and New Year period after last week's scheduled tie with Hamilton Accies was cancelled due to inclement weather. The Light Blues had an experienced side playing in freezing conditions at Murray Park today, with first team players Marius Zaliukas, Sebastien Faure and Ian Black all taking places in the line up. It was an evenly matched game with the best chance of the match for the Gers falling to Ryan Hardie who forced a good save from the keeper after turning his marker well and shooting low. RANGERS: Robinson, Sinnamon, Zaliukas, Faure, Crawford, Black (Roberts), Murdoch, Walsh, Stoney, Ramsay (Halkett), Hardie. http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/academy-news/item/8378-youths-draw-with-falkirk
  12. http://supportersnotcustomers.com/2015/01/20/why-scotland-needs-rangers/
  13. CG on Sky Sports News at 5pm approx. Just saying.
  14. keith jackson ‏@tedermeatballs I'm not going to use the phrase 'statement klaxon' again. But, yes, I think one will be along very shortly....
  15. Mike Ashley sells £117m stake in Sports Direct Share sale fuels rumours that Newcastle United owner is preparing to offer emergency loan to Rangers
  16. Looks like they have about the same voting rights as before so just buying off their mates, I think. 20 January 2015 Rangers International Football Club plc ("Rangers" or the "Company") Holdings in Company The Company announces that it was notified on 19th January 2015 that Alexander Easdale purchased 1,014,000 ordinary shares of 1 penny each in the Company ("Ordinary Shares") on 16 January 2015. As a result, Mr Easdale now holds 5, 256,110 Ordinary Shares in the Company, equal to 6.451% of the issued share capital of the Company. Mr Easdale also holds voting rights over, but does not own, a further 16,028,084 Ordinary Shares, representing 19.672% of the Company, meaning that in total he holds voting rights over 21,284,194 Ordinary Shares, representing 26.123% of the issued share capital of the Company.
  17. Freezing temperatures, icy conditions and a fair chance of snow on Saturday morning in Cowdenbeath. Anyone fancy running a book on whether or not the game gets postponed?
  18. In today's Record: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/mortgaging-ibrox-stadium-makes-no-5006216#rlabs=2
  19. ... in his ET interview My headline makes for a good signature. If anything, those currently trying to oust the board have learned (the hard way) that the key is in having enough shares. Let#s hope this goes through, Murdoch sounds rather confident and you'd hope King has done this because he IS confident of success.
  20. https://twitter.com/jimwhite Jim White ‏@JimWhite 41s42 seconds ago Kenny McDowall has resigned as Rangers caretaker manager, citing personal reasons for stepping down. #Rangers
  21. DAVE KING today insisted he will easily convince both stock market bosses and football chiefs that he IS fit to run Rangers. The former oldco director has called a general meeting to vote on plans to rout the Ibrox board. He will also ask the shareholders to vote in himself, former Blue Knight Paul Murray and John Gilligan as their replacements. The current regime - David Somers, Derek Llambias, Barry Leach and James Easdale - released a statement to the stock exchange on this morning insisting they would fight King's bid. In a thinly-veiled swipe at the Johannesburg-based businessman, they said: "The AIM rules require that all individuals appointed to the board of an AIM company are suitable to be a director of a UK public company." The Castlemilk-born millionaire was forced to hand the South African Revenue Services a cheque for £44million last year in a bid to stave off a tax investigation. SARS claimed he owned £149million but he was spared jail after accepting liability for 41 lesser charges in relation to income tax laws. Both he and Murray will also have to explain their part in the demise of the club after serving on the board under former owner Craig Whyte, who put the club on the path to liquidation in 2012, if they are eventually appointed as part of the SFA’s "fit and proper" person test. But King told PA: "There are no problems regarding the AIM regulations and the issue with the SFA is simple. Only once a director is appointed is an application made to the SFA by the club. "Both myself and Paul will have to deal with our previous directorship at the time that Craig Whyte got involved. Additionally, I will have to deal with my reasons for staying on the board and trying to impose some level of governance during the Whyte era. "I will also deal with my favourable settlement in South Africa. "These are all issues that the SFA rightly has to address in the same way that the SFA has to review the history of anyone who gets involved with a Scottish football team. "That was all considered by me prior to my application - as was the likelihood that the incumbent board will use the media to try to influence the debate by misrepresentation. "The enthusiasm that this board adopts to 'media management' and its failure to act in the interest of shareholders and other stakeholders is exactly why they should be jettisoned in favour of directors who have the requisite business skills and respect for the tradition of Rangers to take the club forward. "History will judge this board as one of the worst the club has ever had. There is not one individual who puts the club above personal interest." King hit back just hours after the board called on him to drop his general meeting and save the cash-strapped club the expense of hosting it. The board's 7am statement added: "If the notice (issued by King) is valid and is not withdrawn, the directors intend to recommend that shareholders vote against the proposed resolutions." In a second statement, the directors conceded they may have to consider using Ibrox as security on a loan - but insisted any decision would not be "taken lightly". Thousands of fans protested against that possibility before Friday night's abandoned clash with Hearts after it was revealed Newcastle owner Ashley was preparing to have his name added to the title deeds of both the stadium and Murray Park as part of a £10million loan arrangement. The Three Bears - wealthy fans Douglas Park, George Letham and George Taylor - had already announced they would increase their own loan offer of £5million - but would not ask for security on the stadium. The board added: "The directors are pursuing bilateral discussions with two parties who are both stakeholders in Rangers. "These discussions contemplate a significant amount of capital being available to the business on a long-term basis in order to enhance the squad which the directors believe is necessary. "A consequence of funding to this level is that, in reality, it may be necessary to use Ibrox stadium as security; such a decision would not be taken lightly. "No decision has been taken at the current time while discussions are being finalised in good faith. "The advance notice does not mean that security will be given, and the directors are adamant that it will not unfairly advantage the party with whom it was agreed. "The board will conclude a transaction, based on its merits, which it believes is in the best interests of shareholders as a whole in accordance with their fiduciary duty." http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/dave-king-ill-convince-stock-5005483?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
  22. We're spending another season in the Championship. No doubt about it.
  23. The Union of Fans is calling on Rangers fans to stage a "mass demonstration" outside Ibrox 45 minutes before kick-off tomorrow night.
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