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  1. CELTIC could not push through the transfer of the one player who arrived at Parkhead on the final day of the transfer window - but managed to sign another player who failed to turn up. Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell started the day in bitterly disappointed mood after Serbia forward Stefan Scepovic pulled out of a move. Lawwell then targeted Manchester City striker John Guidetti, who arrived at Celtic Park for talks. Guidetti, who scored 20 goals in 23 appearances for Feyenoord on loan in 2011-12 before injury derailed his career, remained at Parkhead in the evening but a loan deal for the 22-year-old Swede was not completed before the deadline. And now the Hoops are set to got to UEFA and claim extenuating circumstances prevented them from lodging the paperwork in time. One scenario is that the Swedish striker could negotiate his release from Manchester City, which would make him a free agent and thus able to sign for Celtic outwith the transfer window. Guidetti has spent five years with City, but is yet to make a first-team appearance. Scepovic U-turn Scepovic revived his interest in a move to Celtic and signed the contract that had been prepared for him after he passed a medical and secured a work permit in Paris at the weekend as the clock ticked down towards the end of the window. The 24-year-old, who joined in a £2 million-plus deal from Sporting Gijon, had seen an alternative move to Getafe fall through because of Spanish financial fair play rules. Celtic did release four strikers with Amido Balde joining Beveren on loan for the season and Teemu Pukki and Holmbert Fridjonsson both moving to Danish side Brondby in similar deals. Bahrudin Atajic, who made four first-team appearances, was released. Celtic held on to Virgil van Dijk on the day the defender earned his first Holland call-up for a friendly against Italy and a European Championship qualifier against the Czech Republic. But another player leaving Celtic was Dylan McGeouch, who moved to Hibernian on loan until the end of the season but the Easter Road side failed in a bid for Leigh Griffiths. http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/latest/celtic-to-appeal-to-uefa-over-john-guidetti-loan-1-3528085
  2. RANGERS fan George Letham has reluctantly agreed to give the Ibrox board a short extension to repay the £1million loan that was due last week. The wealthy supporter stepped in to lend his boyhood heroes the seven-figure sum earlier this year as chief executive Graham Wallace was forced to seek a quick fix to the Gers' cash crisis. As part of the agreement, Rangers were scheduled to give Letham his money back by the close of business on Friday, but after the Light Blues announced plans to raise around £4m in a share option last week, the prospect of him receiving his money appeared bleak. SportTimes understands Letham held full and frank discussions with Wallace on Saturday and agreed to a short extension to allow the under-fire board more time to come up with the money. With cash reserves running low at Ibrox, a refusal from Letham would have left Wallace and his fellow-directors with a huge financial headache. But after stepping up to the plate to help Rangers in their hour of need in March, the lifelong Light Blue was not prepared to pull the rug from under the board's feet at this time. The full extent of the Gers' financial plight was laid bare in a statement to the Stock Exchange last week when the board admitted that the future of Rangers International Football Club plc would be 'uncertain' if all 19 million of the new shares were not snapped up by existing investors in the coming weeks. Any funds that are raised will be used to pay off Letham's £1m loan and the £500,000 deal that was agreed with Sandy Easdale, both of which were secured against the Albion car park and Edmiston House. The Ibrox board originally clinched a deal with major shareholders Laxey Partners but that move came under huge criticism from supporters after it was revealed the Hedge Fund would collect £150,000 in interest payments for the short-term loan. Rangers had a cash balance of just £4.2m at June 30 this year, but with £2.7m of that unavailable as use for working capital, the board have been forced to issue more shares in a bid to repay Letham and Easdale and provide much-needed money for the coming weeks. With the financial picture once again bleak at Ibrox, boss Ally McCoist was unable to make any last-minute moves to bolster his squad before the transfer window closed last night. The Gers' two most valuable assets, Lee Wallace and Lewis Macleod, remain at the club, but seven players have gone out on loan - Barrie McKay (Raith Rovers), Calum Gallacher (Cowdenbeath), Danny Stoney (Stranraer), Luca Gasparotto (Airdrie), Robbie Crawford (Morton), Tom Walsh (Stenhousemuir) and Craig Halkett (Clyde). http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/letham-gives-rangers-extra-time-to-repay-1million-loan-178673n.25212709
  3. 2013 - European transfer deadline 11pm on Monday 2nd September as the 31st August fell on a weekend. 2014 - European transfer deadline 11pm on Monday 1st September as the 31st August fell on a weekend. 2014 - SFA follows other European countries without any fuss, statements or similar. 2013 - SFA closes deadline on Sat 31st August, as to extend it to Monday in line with the rest of Europe was not following "Sporting Integrity" Whats the difference I hear you ask? In 2013 Rangers illegal transfer embargo finished on 31 August 2013, therefore giving our club a very short window to sign players before the European deadline passed on the Monday. It was nothing to do with the Rangers situation according to the SFA it was to do with sticking to the Sporting Integrity of the deadline. Seems nobody in Media-land has the balls to bring up this clear breach of their own Integrity laws. Rhegan must be pissing himself all the way to Yorkshire with another pay cheque successfully banked.
  4. http://www.londonstockexchange.com/exchange/news/market-news/market-news-detail.html?announcementId=12066370
  5. LIKE so many Rangers supporters of his generation, Lewis Macleod grew up idolising both Kris Boyd and Kenny Miller. So to find himself in the same side as the strike duo at Ibrox this season has been nothing short of a surreal experience for the youngster. "I watched Kris and Kenny when I was a boy so to be playing alongside them now is pretty weird," he said. "But it is brilliant as well. I am loving every minute of it." It has been obvious from his performances so far this term that Macleod has relished taking to the field alongside the two high-profile acquisitions. It was anticipated that the 20-year-old midfielder would take some time to rediscover his best form this season. He was, after all, sidelined for the second half of the last campaign with a debilitating virus that at one stage started to affect the muscles around his heart. Even Ally McCoist, a huge admirer of the skilful playmaker, felt he would have to be eased gently back into competitive action after he got the all-clear from medical staff to resume training. Yet Macleod has picked up where he left off last year and has been arguably the most consistent and effective Rangers player in their first seven competitive outings. He's also netted four goals in all competitions - a brace against Clyde and one apiece against Hibs and Falkirk. It was no surprise when he was linked with a move to English Championship club Wigan earlier this week. The speed with which the Scotland Under-21 internationalist has adapted to the demands of first-team football has surprised even him. However, he feels that the new arrivals to the Glasgow club have helped him to settle back into the side effortlessly. McCoist added five players to his squad before the transfer window shut on Monday night: Boyd, Miller, Darren McGregor, Marius Zaliukas and keeper Lee Robinson. The veteran strikers plus central defenders McGregor and Zaliukas slotted straight into the side and, after a shaky start, are performing well. "The new boys have fitted in perfectly," said Macleod. "In the first few games Boydy didn't really get going. But he is certainly off the mark now. "He got a hat-trick against Clyde and two against Queen's Park. He is also playing well for the team and is creating chances for others. "Kenny was injured for a few games but came back last Saturday and scored against Queen of the South at Ibrox." THE Ibrox starlet admitted: "It is strange to be playing with Boydy and Kenny and Lee McCulloch, too, as I grew up watching them. "I just put that to the back of my mind and concentrate on doing as well as I can. "It is fantastic to be alongside them in the Rangers starting XI as they are great players and can hopefully help us push on to more success. "It has been enjoyable to play with them. Hopefully they can keep doing as well as they've been doing so far and we can enjoy a good season." Winning the SPFL Championship and completing "The Journey" from the bottom tier back to the top flight is the first priority for Macleod and his Rangers team-mates in the months ahead. Their next task in that league quest will be a tricky trip to Kirkcaldy to face Raith Rovers a week on Friday. But with so many experienced players in the squad at Ibrox, their other objective will be to do well in the cup competitions - Petrofac Training Cup, League Cup and Scottish Cup. Macleod's call-up to the national Under-21s squad was a contributing factor in the postponement of the Petrofac Training Cup quarter-final tie against East Fife that was originally scheduled for Bayview this Saturday. Last week he helped the Gers beat Queen's Park to book a tantalising League Cup second round match against Premiership leaders Inverness Caledonian Thistle. It will be fascinating to see how the League One champs fare against their undefeated top-flight opponents at Ibrox on Tuesday, September 16. Macleod is confident his side can overcome the Highlanders, who beat them 3-0 at Ibrox in the same tournament two seasons ago. He feels that would show this Rangers side is capable of holding its own in the Premiership. "Inverness are an in-form side," he said, "but we are all looking forward to the match. "Hopefully we can beat Raith in our next league game and continue our good run of form into that cup tie. "We obviously want to beat Inverness. It would be brilliant and would prove a point. We did not play well the last time we met Inverness. It was even in the first half but they got the better of us after the break and won the game. "We will be looking for a different scoreline on September 16. The young boys who played that night, myself included, are more experienced now. "We all have over two seasons of senior football under our belts. "Plus, we've brought in some new players who have added a lot of quality. "A lot of things have changed here since we played Inverness the last time around. I hope we can see the difference when we play again." http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/rangers-star-lewis-its-fan-tastic-to-play-with-my-heroes-178818n.25218452
  6. Bill Leckie; Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. If they don’t heed those words as the vultures circle Ibrox once again, then hell mend them. First time their club went to the wall, they manned the barricades to protect it from a big, nasty outside world. For that, no matter what other thoughts you have on the matter, their loyalty surely deserves to be applauded. But now? Two-and-a-half years on? If, despite being given a second chance to repair the horrendous mistakes of the past, a club with this level of support goes into administration AGAIN? Sorry, but if it was me I wouldn’t give them another penny. On Saturday, once more, thousands turned up brandishing red cards to express their unhappiness at the way the love of their lives is being mismanaged. And, once more, those responsible for the mismanagement laughed up their sleeves at the pointlessness of the protest. Because to brandish those red cards, you have to pay your money to get inside the stadium. Which hands yet more cash to the people you’re protesting at so they can go ahead and waste it. Listen, what do I know? They’re not my club and the one I do follow has never been to the heights Rangers have reached to suffer such a humiliating, disorientating fall. I’m just someone looking in and wondering how the hell, in all good conscience, Bluenoses can carry on regardless if and when the accountants take over the asylum once more. Actually, don’t answer that. It’s not a can of worms that’s worth opening, this We-Are-The-People, Rangers-Till-I-Die, stick-your-fingers-in-your-ears-and-sing-Follow-Follow mindset. So, for what it’s worth, let me instead pass on my suggestion for what they should do if their club re-enters the abyss. Sod it. Turn their backs on it. Give it, as a man on the other side of Glasgow once said, not one more thin dime. And instead, invest in the future of Scottish clubs who DO run their affairs honestly and who DO have respect for those who click the turnstiles. Go and back your old skipper Barry Ferguson as he tries to make things happen at Clyde. Go and see what another ex-player in Gary Bollan’s doing with Airdrie. If you’re from Fife, go and watch East Fife or Cowdenbeath. If you’re in Angus, hand your tenner to Arbroath or Brechin, Forfar or Montrose. If you donÂ’t want to give up your wee jaunt over from Northern Ireland, get off the ferry and stroll up to Stair Park. There’s been a school of thought among some these last couple of years that Rangers being forced to do the grand tour of the colonies meant the lower divisions should have been grateful for the gate receipts and the TV handouts. For me, this always got it the wrong way round. It was those inside Ibrox should have been thankful that they were in still in business and ABLE to head for Elgin and Berwick and Stranraer. Now, as fresh financial catastrophe looms, I’d put it to Rangers fans that they could do far more good for far more people if they stopped pouring money into what has long since ceased to be “their” club and started drip-feeding it to those who genuinely are the game’s lifeblood. Why? I’ll give you three good reasons. One, those halfwits in your directors’ box shouldn’t be trusted with the remote for the telly, never mind your wages. Two, that 30,000-odd of you spread among the country’s 20-odd part-time clubs would not only create better atmospheres but also help to cement football in communities for the long term. And three? You might just get to relax and enjoy the game, rather than always being angry and stressed about it. Watching Ayr United play Stenhousemuir might just extend your life. The alternative to this is a simple one. Stand your ground and, by your very presence, condone the halfwits in the directors’ box. Two-and-a-half years on from that first administration and the liquidation that followed, these halfwits need to scramble together £4million in a matter of days to keep their heads above water. To achieve this, they may need to flog their saleable players before the transfer window closes, which will hamper your hopes of promotion back to the top flight. If they don’t raise the money, they stand to suffer a 25-point deduction as punishment for a second spell in administration, all but ending those promotion hopes. How, with the wages they pay and the crowds they attract and the sheer intimidatory force of their name that is a two-goal start against far smaller opposition, can this possibly be? How the lumping hell can the people running a club the size of Rangers be handed the chance they were to start again, to build sensibly, to tool up for their return to where they want to be, and yet fail so utterly miserably? How? The clue is in the word halfwits. So maybe I’ve got this all the wrong way round. And it’s those Ibrox directors who should be sent to the outposts of the footballing empire instead. Maybe Graham Wallace and the Easdales and whoever else is a player in this embarrassing saga are the ones who need to go out into the real world and see how real football people operate. Trust me, if a month shadowing the treasurer at Albion Rovers didn’t shame them into living within their means, liquidation’s too good for them.
  7. CELTIC last night suffered a major transfer window blow as their £2.2 million deal for Stefan Scepovic collapsed. The highly-rated Sporting Gijon striker, 24, had been identified as Celtic’s main transfer target and looked certain to put pen to paper on a four-year deal with the Scottish champions. But the club, who last week exited the Champions League, were left deeply disappointed when the Serbian’s representatives indicated he would not be signing and will now move elswehere, with Getafe believed to be the front-runners. Manager Ronny Deila now faces a frantic final day scramble to bring in a forward before the transfer window closes at 11pm tonight. Deila also insisted that Leigh Griffiths will not be allowed to go on loan to Hibs after the striker came off the bench to score the equaliser in his team’s 1-1 draw with Dundee. Virgil van Dijk, who had hoped for a move to England and was left out of the team yesterday, has also been told he is going nowhere. Speculation about a short-term return to Easter Road by Griffiths has grown as the closure of the transfer window neared, and was heightened on Saturday night after current Hibs front man Farid El Alagui was injured in his club’s humiliating defeat at Alloa. But Deila refused to confirm that any club had approached Celtic about the player, and said his emphasis was on adding to his squad. “I don’t know,” he said when asked about a bid for Griffiths. “I haven’t heard that, but that’s no option. Leigh Griffiths is going to stay. No players are going out. It is important to get people fit and back from injury, get the new players in and get them playing matches so we have a strong and good squad for the fantastic games we are going to have after the next 14 days.” Celtic were far more potent in attack after Griffiths had come on, and they were also a lot more vulnerable at the back without Van Dijk, going behind in the opening minute to a James McPake header. “There has been a lot of speculation and a lot of thinking for him,” Deila said of the 23-year-old defender. “He’s a very important player for us, a very good player – and we’ve told him there’s no chance he is going to leave. He’s too important to us, so there’s no chance we’ll let him go during this window. We couldn’t replace him. So he is going to stay here. Of course it’s hard for him and he’s had a lot of thinking to do. But it will not be a problem. His girlfriend is also pregnant and due soon. So he hasn’t had the right focus. He wouldn’t have been 100 per cent today – that is why he didn’t play. “He needs a couple of days to get this out of his system, get thinking positively again. He’s a player we want to have and we’d like to sign him on an even longer contract. That’s how it is. We need good players here and we need to have his kind of player if we want to get the results we need. So that is no problem. “He had, of course, wishes to get to a new stage. He is a young player and he’ll get many chances in his career. But now we need him here and he knows that and that is how it is going to be.” Deila refused to say whether he or Van Dijk had made the final decision that the Dutchman would not be in the squad at Dundee. “We talked about it,” he added. “When you are not 100 per cent at Celtic you can’t play. Then other players can do a better job and that is how it is.” Deila hinted more signings were possible before the window closes, saying the club were “working all the time to see what the options are”. He refused to say whether Amido Balde would be allowed out on loan, and declined to comment when asked if he had made or would make a bid for Dundee United’s Stuart Armstrong. “We’ll see what’s happening. On Tuesday everyone will see what the squad is.” http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/spfl/blow-for-celtic-as-stefan-scepovic-deal-collapses-1-3526698
  8. Yet another Sinky got wrong Just got a move to Norwich City that could net Falkirk £1 million. I watched him play in the same youth team as Darren Ramsay and Charlie Telfer for a couple of years, where as he may not have been the standout he wouldn't have been a candidate for release in my opinion. Gary Oliver who recently scored for Hearts, Lewis Spence and Lewis Martin who are now regulars at Dunfermline also played in the same team on occasions although they are a year younger.
  9. RANGERS boss Ally McCoist is hoping his squad can remain intact after new fears were raised over the future of the Ibrox club. The troubled Glasgow giants announced yesterday that they need to raise at least £3million from a new share offering later this year. That shock admission led to speculation that Gers stars like Lewis Macleod and Lee Wallace could be sold to generate much-needed cash. Light Blues left-back Wallace has been linked with a move to English Championship club Brighton during the summer. However, McCoist has not been told he has to offload anyone and is hoping the transfer window closes on Monday night without his top players leaving. He said: "I'm happy with the squad I've got. In an ideal world, we'd have tweaked it a wee bit here and there but we have a good pool of players. We have strengthened up front and at the back. "Like every other manager and coach in the country, I would like to add a little bit here and there. "But if we don't have the opportunity to do that then I'm delighted with the boys I've got. "I haven't been told people have to go before people come in. Without stating the obvious, in the current climate I don't see much incoming activity at the moment." However, McCoist accepted the financial uncertainty at Rangers could result in rival clubs making knockdown bids for his leading players in the coming days. He said ahead of today's match with Queen of the South: "I would obviously hope as a manager that bids would be turned down. "I'm happy with my squad and I don't want to see it being depleted. "But I do know what's involved in football and I know that sometimes people make decisions that can alter your squad. That's part and parcel of football. "I could understand if clubs felt we may have to sell players, but I would hope that no bids come in for any of the players. We'll just have to wait and see what happens." He added: "If we did lose someone we'd just have to regroup and get on with it. "As I say, I'm not expecting to lose anyone. I'm expecting to go with the squad we've got and hopefully that's the case. "You obviously look at the squad and would like to add in one or two departments to make us stronger. "But the whole thing is a very slow process. We are absolutely miles away from where we want to be, but at the same time we are definitely stronger than we were a year or two years ago. Hopefully we will continue to grow in strength. "I spoke with Graham this morning and met him earlier this week. " There haven't been any budget talks as such but we have spoken about players and the squad. He didn't say that we had to sell. "I could let this get me down if I allowed it to. But I'm looking forward to a good game against a really good team. "That's how you keep yourself positive and focused because this will be a real game." http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/rangers-boss-mccoist-in-transfer-plea-to-board-178352n.25188235
  10. http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/item/7532-lee-signs-season-long-deal
  11. ALLY McCOIST is confident there will be some ins and outs at Rangers before the end of the transfer window. The Ibrox boss added four players to his squad earlier this summer. McCoist has been granted permission by chief executive Graham Wallace to sign former keeper Lee Robinson as back-up to the injured Cammy Bell. The manager said: "I am very, very hopeful there will be a bit of activity in the next nine days or so, and it will probably be both ways. "In an ideal world I'd like to get some of the youngsters out on loan. "The club has a good history of doing it. The likes of Allan McGregor and Charlie Adam did themselves no harm in going to St Johnstone, Dunfermline, Ross County and St Mirren before they made their breakthroughs here. "I'm a fan of loan deals. We did it last year with Barrie McKay and Calum Gallagher. "So if that opportunity arises and it suits all the parties then we would do that again." McCoist will go into today's Championship clash with Dumbarton at Ibrox without Richard Foster and Fraser Aird, who are carrying knocks. But the Rangers gaffer has had some positive news on Bell's shoulder injury. He said: "The scan was encouraging. The specialist was as happy as a specialist could be. "He's told Cammy he will need to build up the shoulder for the next couple of weeks or so. "Fingers crossed, he could and should be all right after that." http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/mccoist-expects-more-in-and-out-at-rangers-177409n.25123288
  12. THE TV station where Graeme Souness operates as football’s No 1 pundit is more of a small town than anything else. Studios and offices sit like apartment blocks on a grid of roads and pavements and at some corners trees flourish. On the streets of Skytown, you don’t want for anything, not a courtesy bus nor an over-elaborate high-five. “They’re putting in swimming pools just now,” says the skinny-trousered lad taking me to meet the Scotland legend as construction crews dig. “Look,” he adds, as we pass an on-site shop, “you can even get your hair and beauty here.” Maybe Souness popped into the salon today because on Sky Sports the night before last he was modelling a beard and now he is clean-shaven. The beard was much-discussed. It was, as they say, “trending”. And amid the cyber-chatter a text was pinged to his mobile at the very moment he was opining on Real Madrid’s revival of the gallactico concept – “Get rid of it.” “The wife didn’t like it,” laughs Souness. “I grew it on holiday and came back to work straight off the plane. Her message was: ‘Don’t come home with that’.” It made him look kingly, I suggest. “No,” he insists, “it made me look too bloody old.” There is a generation of Scots who used to have a little bit of a man-crush on Graeme Souness and I’m one of them. In the 1970s and early 1980s no other footballer played like him or looked like him – no Scot at any rate. Next to the standard-issue carrot-tops and comb-over guys, the peely wallys and the wee bauchles, Souness resembled nothing so much as a Greek god. Sounessyus carried a book of his philosophies with a secret compartment for a dagger. He was the playmaker with the haymaker, the smiling assassin who behind the fearsome moustache probably wasn’t smiling at all. Of course we winced when the confrontations got even fiercer to compensate for the player getting slower, but everything considered, we were glad he was on our side. How he was a bad tackler and, in his mind, a bad husband and father It is admiration laced with trepidation which prevents me from suggesting that with his attire today – the skinny-trousered look in zazzy electric blue, co-ordinated trainers – he’s trying to look too bloody young. No need for any timidity, however, for he will talk about anything. How he was a bad tackler and, in his mind, a bad husband and father. What the great football city of Liverpool thinks of him these days. Why there’s nothing new in the game. He will even go all way back to Argentina 1978 for those of us still obsessed by that World Cup. First though he wants to tell me more about his holiday. “The reason Karen [the second Mrs Souness] wasn’t there was it was a dad-and-lad vacation. Just me and my son James, eight days in Montana, an unbelievable trip. The first two days on horseback to get there, then floating down a river trying to catch trout. This was the Bob Marshall Wilderness. He sounds like he might have been Scottish, doesn’t he? [Roots in Bavaria, actually]. In his life Bob campaigned for the area to be protected as the great outdoors but this only happened after he died. No drilling or fracking can happen there, not even farming. There was no hot water, hence the wilderness beard. But James and I had a fantastic time, camping out among the bears and wolves.” Fracking is only a modish technical term for what used to happen to the earth below football pitches when our man – of Middlesbrough, Liverpool, Sampdoria, Rangers and on 54 occasions Scotland – stomped across them, showing who was boss. James is 15, which was his old man’s age when he left home in Edinburgh to begin asserting himself at Tottenham. Another chuckle. “Tottenham had Alan Mullery, England captain. They had Martin Peters, World Cup-winner, ten years ahead of his time. They had Steve Perryman. And there was this little squirt from Carrickvale Secondary knocking on Bill Nic’s [Nicolson’s] door demanding to know why he wasn’t getting a game.” Our chat is happening amid sofa-heavy informality where earwiggers might be surprised to hear Souness,
ostensibly on promotional duty for the new English Premier League season, detail his peak-years grooming regime. Earwigging the adjacent sofas we can hear jokes about Liverpool being workshopped for the Soccer AM show. Souness, of course, was an Anfield icon, lifting three European Cups. But all that changed when he sold the story of his triple heart bypass to the Sun, a paper which enraged Merseyside with its claims of Liverpool fans pickpocketing the dead in the Hillsborough disaster. The Reds’ charge to the title, faltering at the last, was one of last season’s great stories, but when the cameras panned to Kenny Dalglish and Alan Hansen in the posh seats the third member of the holy Scotia trinity was absent. Also remembering his fall-outs while an unsuccessful Liverpool manager, I ask how he would describe relations with the city and the club now and he says: “Permanently damaged. I think I’ll remain unpopular there and that’s the price I’ll have to pay. I made an error of judgment but I can only apologise so many times. I’m just going to have to live with that.” There are a few Souness images in the fitba’ tapestry, one being Liverpool’s tartan triumvirate threatening to run off with the 1978 European Cup. Scripted? “Totally spontaneous. Although after that, every trophy the club won, we had to repeat it. The photographers would go: ‘Give us the Jock picture.” Another unforgettable image is Souness on a sweltering Malaga night of ultimate heartache explaining our third World Cup exit on goal difference in succession and he’s bare-chested. “Scary,” he says, but only if you don’t know that as a lad he won a Tarzan-o-like contest at Butlin’s in Ayr. “I don’t remember taking off my shirt but it sounds likely, doesn’t it?” At this point I mildly offend him by asking how his Italian adventure of a few years later shaped his personal style. No no, he was always fairly “continental” as far as his Scotland team-mates were concerned. “I used cologne – unheard of among the guys. I used conditioner in my hair – unheard of. I used a hairdryer – unheard of.” It’s written in legend that room-mate Dalglish, possibly glimpsing his first-ever barnet-blaster, was too nervous to be left alone with Souness, thinking he might be gay. “Absolutely true. I think that was 1974 when I just got into the squad for a friendly in West Germany before the World Cup. Poor Kenny. “Among the rest of the lads I was regarded – quite correctly, incidentally – as cocky, vain, arrogant and the rest. Archie Gemmill called me the Chocolate Soldier because I’d most likely eat myself and he was dead right. But one of these things was essential for professional sport. You need to be a little bit arrogant. You certainly needed it the way football was played in my era.” Strains of Don’t Cry for Me Argentina Maybe the most famous image, though, is from the ’78 World Cup when the cameras panning along the team changed too late to the strains of Don’t Cry for Me Argentina, pausing at Souness for the line: “The answer was there all the time.” “Well,” he says, “I became a manager myself later so I understood why Ally [MacLeod] played the guys who’d got us to Argentina, [bruce] Rioch and [Don] Masson.” Even though they’d come off the back of poor seasons for their clubs? He doesn’t take the bait. “Ally had to show them loyalty. But maybe I should have played in the second game [against Iran] because that was one we had to win.” Sounessyus came down from the mountain or rather the prefabs in Edinburgh’s Saughton Mains, “Maybe where we lived wasn’t the most salubrious but I had everything a boy needed.” Dad James, a glazier, took on a second job and mum Elizabeth worked, too, but Souness is really talking about love. “My father doted on me, never once raised his hand.” His mother was firmer, reminding him he wasn’t yet the great player he reckoned himself to be. Now he is laughing at the memory of a photo of Tynecastle Boys Club Under-10s, him with a face like thunder because as captain he wasn’t sat in the middle of the front row clutching the newest trophy. “But as a young footballer I had a tremendous slice of luck having two older brothers who I was
always trying to beat but who also looked out for me.”
  13. As many of you will already know, Frankie published an obituary this morning following the extremely sad news of the recent passing of Gordon Young who was a regular contributor to the site and very well known to Gersnet forum members as Bluebear54. Tragically, Gordon finally lost a year long battle with cancer on Thursday night, but he goes with our love and best wishes as a knowledgeable, passionate and witty Bear who we will all remember very fondly indeed. Back in October 2013 I asked Gordon to write the article for our very first regular Gersnet magazine column, which at that time was for Seventy2 magazine. They were running a Dutch themed special and published below is the full 2500 word article Gordon submitted as an initial draft before he cut it down to the final 1400 word piece for the magazine submission and before the news of Ricksen's illness broke causing some slight changes to the wording. Gordon knew that his full article draft would be published at some point because we discussed what a shame it was that he had to cut it almost in half to meet the word count requirements for the column and that once a period of time had lapsed where it would no longer affect magazine sales, we could put the whole article out on Gersnet. So in remembrance of Bluebear54, here is his article 'A Glimpse of Glamour': A Glimpse of Glamour Written by Gordon Young (Bluebear54) The Early Years Although born and raised on the East Coast of Scotland, a maternal grandfather and a father, both passionate Rangers supporters, ensured that I was destined to follow follow in their footsteps when pursuing my lifelong passionate affair with football - an affair which has been split into three distinct phases due to the dice that life has spit out at me. The Rangers teams of that first phase of my love affair were epitomised by hardy, athletic, spirited Scottish players, such as Caldow, Shearer, Greig, MacDonald and Jardine. That’s not to say there wasn’t any skill around. Those guys had enough to go along with their other skills, but the Rangers of that era were also blessed with superbly gifted players such as Baxter, Wilson, Henderson and Johnson. Not mentioning any further names is a severe disservice to many great Rangers players of those generations. But they were Scottish, and the style was undeniably Scottish. We didn’t expect any fancy possession football, we hadn’t heard of the beautiful game, and “totally mental” was more often on our lips than “total football.” We preferred tanner ba’ wingers belting it down the wings, bruisers of centre forwards giving it more elbow than they took, and defenders who didn’t ever take prisoners. On the terraces, like some latter-day Colosseum crowd, we bayed for blood and actively encouraged our heroes to bury or waste opponents. It was expected, it was part of the game and it made for an entertaining spectacle. In 1972, not long after Rangers had finally won – at their third attempt - the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1972, I ventured out again into the world, this time not to return to Scotland until well over a score of countries had worn out my shoes and nigh on thirty years had etched their lines on my face. In my travels, I have found that there are not many better things to bring two different nationalities together than a pint and a talk about football. I thus unknowingly set out on what in retrospect was further education in the art of football. It was clear that most fans I spoke to had scant regard for Scottish football and saw it as kick and rush and a tad barbaric. Fine I thought, youse lot are a bunch of pansies. In those days, most I spoke to were drooling about the Dutch style. And to be honest, from going to games with other fans, I started to see their point. I really did. It took its time, I didn’t initially find it entertaining, but I eventually saw another beauty and another excitement in the game. Now, when I look back through an old man’s eyes, Rangers were to eventually produce a true glimpse of the beautiful game and that glimpse would be Dutch inspired. In the course of their 141 year history, Rangers are reckoned to have provided a footballing home for more than 50 nationalities of footballers. With a total of 11 players having played first team football for the Gers, Holland tops that table. And their inspiration topped the table in how we played. The Early Birds The first ever first team appearance at Rangers by a Dutch player first team was Peter Huistra in 1990. He was a speedy winger, not far removed from the Henderson/Johnson mould and, as such, he became a firm favourite of the fans. Signed by Souness, he didn’t score barrowloads, but he certainly scored some vital goals for the Club, and won in all five League medals, two League Cup medals and a Scottish Cup medal, including a Treble in 1992-93. Despite a lack of goals, he was superb at making openings, and in my mind he’s still up there with the best we’ve ever had at taking corners. Shortly after the departure of Huistra for Japan in 1995, two Dutch players arrived almost simultaneously at Ibrox from quite different destinations. In 1996, Theo Snelders arrived at Queen Street from Aberdeen, and Peter Van Vossen arrived at Glasgow Airport from Turkey. It always says something to me about Rangers that Snelders is held in such high regard by Aberdeen fans, yet many Rangers fans have extremely vague memories of him. Of course, he was a back up to our very own special legend – the Flying Pig – and also Antti Niemi, so he certainly had a job on his hands. Despite this, or probably more to do with injuries to the other two, Theo Snelders managed to make a fair few first team appearances for Rangers between 1996 and 1999 without ever setting the heather on fire. So, while one of those arrivals in ’96 was destined to be fairly anonymous, the other was destined for almost total notoriety and guaranteed an indelible place in Scottish football folklore. Yes folks! Roll up! I give you the man who taught us all how “to do the Van Vossen.” Don’t get me wrong now, Peter came to Rangers with a great track record. Ex-Ajax, ex- European Cup winner, a fair number of international caps. It all looked good. And we were also getting shot of Salenko, whom many fans thought was yet one more momentous waste of money. Which in fact, he was. Couldn’t be better, so Van Vossen was part of the master plan to punt Oleg Salenko to Istanbulspor. Sneaky. Looking back, I can imagine simultaneous moments at either end of Europe when Walter Smith was sitting down in Glasgow with a whisky and Cem Uzan was sitting down in Istanbul with his coffee, both of them laughing like hyenas and thinking “Yes, I got rid of him.” That moment Albertz unselfishly laid off a pass opening up an empty goal for Van Vossen lives with everyone who witnessed the match. It was the striker’s Old Firm debut, he skied it from all of 7 yards, and his only saving grace was that we were winning 1-0. Peter didn’t last too long needless to say, and after 22 appearances he was on his travels again. In time, in 1998, like some kind of expectant grandfather, I returned to Scotland, having been kept up to date on a Rangers-rich diet of SKY television, and fully anticipating a bright new future for Rangers where Dick Advocaat had bulldozed in and begun what has been referred to as the Dutch revolution. And if the truth be known, coinciding with my return, those two seasons of 1998-99 and 1999-00 (and also partly 2000-01) showed a real glimpse of glamour. Here we finally had a Rangers team who were not being routinely dismissed by the European hoi polloi. This was a Rangers team who would win a treble followed by a double and who would go on to demolish a top class PSV Eindhoven side and other noteworthy continental sides such as Parma, Monaco and the best that Germany could offer. Not so much in a Scottish style, but in an entertaining continental style. I could have been forgiven for thinking I had arrived in Heaven. The Orange Invasion – A Glimpse of Glamour Advocaat’s first Dutch signings were Arthur Numan and Giovanni van Bronckhorst followed later by Michael Mols, and they were a class apart indeed. Of all the Dutch players to have played for Rangers, Gio van Bronckhorst is arguably the one that fans have been most fortunate to have seen grace Ibrox’s turf. He was a true thoroughbred, and it didn’t take such a long time for fans to realise that he was maybe a wee bit too good for us to hope to hold on to. Gio ended up being sold to Arsenal in 2001 for close on £9m after winning a treble and a double for Rangers. Gio went on to score went on to score 22 goals for us, 13 in the league, 3in the Scottish Cup, 1 in the League Cup, 3 in the Champions League and 2 in the UEFA Cup. However, these statistics still belie the fact that this player was an essential cog in the machine that Advocaat was assembling, and he very much made that Rangers team tick with his guile, finesse and vision. As confirmation of van Bronckhorst’s quality, he went on to become a Barcelona stalwart while also playing well over 100 internationals for Holland and becoming the Dutch international captain. In much the same way as van Bronckhorst, Arthur Numan oozed class in the left back position, and after initial problems with injuries, he settled down to become a key part of both Advocaat’s and latterly McLeish’s teams. Signed from PSV Eindhoven, Numan had a respectable international career and became a very welcome sight for fans whenever his name appeared on the team sheet. As with almost any Rangers player, a cracker of a goal against Celtic, especially when it either wins a game or saves one, ensures legendary status, and Numan’s 25 yard stunner at Ibrox to earn a 1-1 draw was no different in cementing his name into Ibrox folklore. Of Advocaat’s first batch of signings, Michael Mols probably promised least and I must admit to not being aware of him before he signed for Rangers, but superb goalmouth turning skills and goals against FC Haka, Hearts and then a memorable four against Motherwell followed by two against Aberdeen soon ensured that – like most fans – I wanted to see his name in the starting eleven every week. Another two goals in the 4-1 roasting that Rangers gave a top class PSV side seemed to promise a Rangers career to remember. Unfortunately, in a Champions League match which Bayern were fortunate to win, he suffered a horrific injury in a collision with Oliver Khan. The injury was to keep him out for a season and a half, and unfortunately for both Mols and Rangers, common opinion has it that he was never quite the same player again. Tragic.
  14. Gonna charge up the phone. Have a feeling there might be some Rangers breaking news to come tonight as well! https://twitter.com/tedermeatballs
  15. It didn't take them very long. Lunney or no Lunney ... http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/item/7359-mohsni-handed-two-game-ban Monday, 04 August 2014 16:00 Mohsni Handed Two Game Ban Written by Rangers Football Club RANGERS have been informed today that defender Bilel Mohsni will serve a two-match suspension following his red card in the pre-season friendly against Derby on Saturday. The Tunisian defender will now miss the opening two games of the season against Hibernian in the Petrofac Training Cup tomorrow night and the first league match of the campaign against Hearts on Sunday.
  16. Celtic 1-6 Tottenham http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2714050/Celtic-1-6-Tottenham-Roberto-Soldado-Erik-Lamela-Christian-Eriksen-target-Mauricio-Pochettinos-easy-win.html
  17. http://www.rangers.co.uk/news/headlines/item/7334-rangers-launch-club-membership MANAGER Ally McCoist and Captain Lee McCulloch joined a group of fans at Murray Park today (Tuesday 29, July 2014) to launch Rangers Club Membership – an initiative designed to bring supporters closer than ever to their Club. As this is the inaugural season for Club Membership all supporters who join will become Founder Members including all season ticket holders, who will automatically receive complimentary Founder Membership. Club Members will enjoy a series of exclusive benefits bringing them closer to the Club and the team as well as access to Member only events and promotions. Membership will bring enhanced participation with the Club including the ability for Members to apply for a position on the Fans Board and to vote in the Fans Board elections; exclusive members only email in advance of every home game; Members only prize draws; behind the scenes experiences including Q&A sessions with the Manager/CEO/Players and a Members only training day at Ibrox. Members will also have the chance to enjoy discounts across the Club including Matchday Hospitality, Ibrox Stadium Tours and non-matchday dining at the Argyle House Restaurant. As a Rangers Junior Founder Member supporters will have the opportunity to be mascots at home games, have access to exclusive online content and competitions and will receive a Junior Founder Member only pack including a scarf, wristband, bag and stickers in addition to their Founder Member badge, certificate and card. Season ticket holders can take up their benefits from today and their pack, which includes the Founder Member badge, certificate and card will be issued in the next 4-6 weeks. Non season ticket holders can purchase Club Membership online at rangers.co.uk/membership priced £24.99 plus P&P* for adults and £14.99 plus P&P* for juniors. Members can benefit from the many benefits right away and Founder Member welcome packs will be posted within 4-6 weeks from purchase. Ally McCoist commented: “This initiative is a fantastic way for our fans to get closer than ever to their Club. As Rangers Founder Members supporters can apply to join the Fans Board or vote in the upcoming Fans Board elections, have the opportunity to take part in exclusive Q&A sessions with the CEO and myself, attend a members only training session at Ibrox or have the chance of a behind the scenes tour of Murray Park. “I am also delighted that all Rangers season ticket holders are being given Founder Member status automatically and will receive all the benefits associated with that. Our supporters have shown unbelievable passion, loyalty and commitment to Rangers, especially in the last few seasons, and I can’t thank them enough for their continued backing. “I encourage all fans to become Founder Members of the Club, get even closer and take advantage of the exclusive range of benefits on offer. We are on our way back to the top of Scottish football and together the journey will be much easier.” Lee McCulloch added: “The Rangers fans are the lifeblood of this great institution and initiatives like Club Membership are a key way to reward that incredible loyalty. Our supporters have backed the team in huge numbers at Ibrox and in away games in the past few seasons and I am sure they will get right behind us once again when the campaign begins. “The players and management staff are all looking forward to the opening league game against Hearts where we will unfurl the League One flag and honour the late Sandy Jardine and I ask all Rangers fans to sign up for Club Membership and be part of this exciting initiative.”
  18. Moyes tried for 11 years to get Everton above Man Utd and now he has succeeded. Yet another defeat and 12 points off the top. Everton were far better shape than Utd and look more like scoring. The appointment just wasn't right. I admire Man Utd giving a British manager the chance but surely the football club is more important that a few morales about continuity of a manager. Jose whilst not hanging around for too long would have kept the trophies coming. When Liverpool were winning in the 70s and 80s they did it under 4 managers which says the club was all ok and the players were up for it. But perhaps its just the cycle of football. This is a side that won the league at a canter last year but don't look like they will finish top 6 this season. I didn't tip them for top 4. I understand managers need time but that's normally when things aren't going well. This is the champions and they have been derailed. They need 2 players in the quality of Fabregas, Sneidier, Modric, Schweinsteiger, Xavi, Iniesta. They should break the bank in January for Juan Mata. The centre midfields and creativity of the other big 3 is not worth comparing. Chelsea have Oscar, Hazard, Lampard, Ramiries, Essien, Mata, etc. Man City have Silva, Toure, Fernandinho, Nasri etc Arsenal have Ozil, Ramsay, Wilshire, Arteta, Flamini, Rosicky, Cazorla
  19. Last evening, watching BBC Scotland's piece on Rangers trials with HMRC, I wondered why Angela Haggerty was chosen to counter Craig Houston. The current on going gripe is with HMRC, where is their representative? How about one of any number of the usual suspects(a lot of them regular contributors to BBC Scotland) who rushed to put the boot into the club? Even a Mark Daly who won a prestigious award for his BBC Scotland documentary, 'the man who sold the jerseys'? BBC Scotland utilise considerable energy in maintaining their policy of, 'careful hate'. Cosgrove keeps up the ridicule, Spence pushes the envelope regularly, and the News Department never misses an opportunity to demonise and marginalise(who can forget the bouncing ball on perceived sectarian lyrics)? Careful Hate just wouldn't cut it, the momentum had been building among the Rangers support, harbouring a legitimate sense of injustice. Quelling such fires requires venomous hate. Angela has a long history of being supportive of Irish republicanism, including providing necessary mitigation on the awkward area of armed struggle. Angela has been all over the Rangers situation, like a rash. Lucrative too for Angela, as Editor of Phil McFournames collection of essays, entitled 'Downfall'. Angela would have been paid a fee for lat evening's appearance too. Now, Angela is a well practised contributor to social media and she is 'Friends' with lots, if not all the regular detractors of Rangers. I suspect a few BBC Scotland Producers liked the cut of Angela's jib yesterday : "the revenge frenzy being whipped up by the Scottish tabloids is shameful. They know what the Rangers culture is capable of" and, "Rangers are a social club for people still clinging on to a white British protestant identity that revolves around fancy dress". You can see the attractiveness of misrepresentation, the HMRC thing has become inconvenient; get Angela on to spit a bit of venom on to the frenzy. Remember, the tabloids are shameful, BBC Scotland is unfailingly moral.
  20. Dont know if this has been covered or not , but who exactly is paying for this tour , we are taking a playing squad of 25 plus management and backroom teams , there must be the bulk of 40 plus in the party , yet we are playing basically junior teams by Scottish standards , so given we are struggling financially , the question is who's footing the bill for this little extravaganza
  21. RANGERS have experienced a flurry of late season ticket sales since striker Kris Boyd made his emotional return to Ibrox last week. Boyd ended weeks of speculation when he signed a one-year deal with the SPFL League One champions - and is set to team up again with Kenny Miller. And his capture has since led to a surge in Light Blue supporters signing up to watch Ally McCoist's side in the 2014/15 season. The ticket office at Ibrox at the weekend was queued out of the door for long spells as fans snapped up season books for the new campaign. Lifelong fan Alan Anderson, from Cambuslang, was taken aback at the level of interest when he renewed his ticket at Ibrox on Saturday. He told SportTimes: "I was told the season ticket office was going to be open until after two o'clock and popped down half an hour before it shut. "But when I got there there were a lot of cars in the car park and people were queueing out of the door. "There was a great atmosphere among the supporters who were waiting to buy tickets. "I think most of them were, like me, buying season tickets because Kris Boyd has signed. "But people were genuinely excited about the season ahead and the prospect of playing teams like Hearts and Hibs. "I wasn't going to renew my season ticket, but I decided to do so when I saw that Boyd had signed. "I think a lot of people were the same as me. "I don't necessarily like who is in charge at Rangers at the moment, but I am, as the slogan goes, prepared to support the team and not the regime." Rangers announced to the Stock Exchange a fortnight ago that "approximately 17,000" season tickets had been bought by fans this summer. That is in stark contrast to the 34,000 supporters who made the Gers one of the best backed clubs in Britain for the second stage of "The Journey". The Union of Fans - an umbrella group comprising six supporters organisations - has been urging fans not to renew their season tickets. The UoF and former director Dave King set up Ibrox 1972 Ltd in the close season and urged supporters to pledge their money to it instead. They want Rangers to give them security over the stadium and the training ground at Auchenhowie in return for the cash. http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/rangers/rangers-revel-in-boyd-ticket-bounty-169185n.24618366
  22. millers back and it looks like boyds coming back anybody else you would welcome back I know I would like Henderson and Wilson on the wings ,this type of signing is not the way forward
  23. Information from a few journalists now suggesting he will undergo a medical for us today after turning down a move to Hearts...
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