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Make or break day as Craig Whyte set to either finalise bid for club or walk away


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The latest thoughts from James Traynor:

 

Multi-millionaire Craig Whyte will either silence his doubters by pressing home his bid to own the club or walk away.

And if he does turn his back Rangers would be pushed into an increasingly bleak and uncertain future.

In fact, the no-buyer option does not bear thinking about for Ibrox fans. They were left waiting anxiously for news last night but sources close to the talks stressed the deal was "still in the balance".

Earlier in the day there had been TV reports that Lloyds Bank had cleared the way for Whyte to conclude his �£25million buyout but those were wide of the mark.

Although Lloyds have shown more willingness to do business with Whyte, there were still a few loose ends blowing in the wind by close of play last night.

And unless these can be gathered in and tied up today Whyte will turn his back and walk away.

But after having giving Rangers fans hope he will have to explain why he refused to come up with the cash.

However, if he does hit reverse - and there are still many who believe he'll have to because he doesn't have the amounts required - Rangers will be plunged so deeply into financial trouble they might never fully recover.

There is no doubt Whyte has been frustrated by the bank's rate of progress and Lloyds were forced to insist they were not blocking any sale.

But one or two issues which Whyte's people might have regarded as obstacles have now been altered or removed.

There will now be no �£1million exit fee. Last night it was being suggested the bank are now more likely to accept a deal which would see Rangers' debt repayed in full - but only the figure as it stands today.

That's why Whyte, if he can tie up his deal to buy Sir David Murray's 75 per cent, won't have to hand over �£33million which was the buyout cost last year.

Whyte's people have been arguing the price should come down in accordance with the debt but it might have taken a while for others to agree.

Now it seems the bank, who cannot enjoy the publicity of being seen as part of Rangers' problems, would be delighted to have the club's debt wiped from their books.

They might even have hoped to be rid of Rangers last night because today will see the release of the club's interim figures and while they will be healthy they cannot be seen as a sign of what lies ahead without a new owner.

Rangers' debt, which was close to �£29million when Whyte's interest was revealed in November, will be down to around �£19million, suggesting the future is stable.

But unless Whyte does finalise his deal nothing will disguise the harsh reality facing one of the game's oldest clubs.

And there are now fears within the Ibrox boardroom for Rangers' future.

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As with most articles on the situation - a lot about not a lot. I suspect that Traynor is one of the few hacks who are being used by bringing leaks and exclusives to exaggerate one or both positions as negotiators seek to gain some advantage. Ergo, treat this whole thing with a pinch of salt until Minty's shares are officially traded on the PLUS market.

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As with most articles on the situation - a lot about not a lot. I suspect that Traynor is one of the few hacks who are being used by bringing leaks and exclusives to exaggerate one or both positions as negotiators seek to gain some advantage. Ergo, treat this whole thing with a pinch of salt until Minty's shares are officially traded on the PLUS market.

 

Exactamundo!

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