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Rangers 3 - 1 Dunfermline (Jig 70 pen, Daly 77, Mohnsi 90)


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There's been a lot of water under the Forth bridge since Rangers last played Dunfermline. Not only were the Pars the last team we played before we entered administration in February 2012; the Fife outfit have also suffered an insolvency event of their own, although - unlike us - they had the opportunity on the pitch to avoid dropping down two leagues since that game at East End Park 21 months ago. It's amazing that less than two years later our paths are crossing again under markedly different circumstances.

 

It certainly seems that although our fiscal troubles were eerily similar (though on different scales) the football authorities and fellow clubs were happy to accommodate Dunfermline a bit more charitably than they did us. C'est la vie and there's no doubt their support have gone the extra mile in their efforts to avoid similar future issues. While Rangers fans argue daily with their own shadow, Dunfermline supporters' group Pars United agreed a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) with creditors in July and the final details were completed last month. Pars United has also acquired East End Park, which was in administration under a separate company, as part of a community ownership structure. In effect the fans now own their club. Sure, that doesn't necessarily mean a safe (or successful) future for Dunfermline but I'd be lying if I didn't say I wasn't at least a little bit envious of what they've achieved so far - in little over six months as well!

 

Of course, as touched on above, scale is as much a reason for our differing paths as anything else. East End Park may be small and dated in comparison to Ibrox Stadium but its overheads will be rather less. The same can be said for the leasing of the Pars' Pitreavie training ground compared to the costs of running Auchenhowie. Meanwhile a cursory examination of both club's squads and wage bills shows why Rangers are already 11 points (and 33 goals) ahead of their considered closest rivals for the SPFL League One title. The two clubs may have suffered from similar fates in recent times but, as much as Dunfermline have an equally proud heritage, the differences off the park should ensure a difference on it - tomorrow night at least.

 

The main reason for this will be the players Ally McCoist has at his disposal. Not only has the Rangers manager been able to retain internationalists such as Lee Wallace and Lee McCulloch (who both played in the last Pars match); he's been able to supplement his huge squad with Scottish Premiership quality players like Cammy Bell, Nicky Law and Jon Daly with the latter two in particular being the main reason for Rangers' unbeaten league campaign so far. Unfortunately for Dunfermline, despite more international matches on the horizon, it appears McCoist will be able to rely on pretty much the same starting XI again which has changed only minimally over the last couple of months. Any late injuries aside, only the one change is expected tomorrow evening with Ian Black returning from a Scottish Cup suspension to replace Kyle Hutton in midfield. The Rangers manager may wish to rotate one or two others into the team but that's unlikely on the whole. This should mean a very familiar team along the lines of below:

 

Possible team (4-4-2):

 

:cb:

:rf: :bm: :jig: :lw:

:ap: :nl: :ib: :lm:

:nc: :jd:

 

All in all, Rangers should win tomorrow night and, no matter the result, there's little doubt that we are overwhelming favourites to win the League One title as well. However, as the Pars fans look forward to a new future of their own making, can the same alleged certainty be applied to the challenges we face off the park? In that sense, Dunfermline may have already sneaked a win over their supposed Rangers supporting peers.

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Guest Dummiesoot

A good read Frankie our problem though was hmrc was our major creditor. The Pars cva was zero pence in the pound I believe if not it was very very low a different ball park altogether from us.

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A good read Frankie our problem though was hmrc was our major creditor. The Pars cva was zero pence in the pound I believe if not it was very very low a different ball park altogether from us.

 

That's true but there's no doubt the Pars support have united together to take control of their own destiny.

 

Sure, these are somewhat different situations but, as said in the article, I admire their fans for grasping the nettle.

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Guest Dummiesoot

True Frankie we never got the opportunity. Everything was thrown in favour of a rejected cva with a fictitious cva date. I would have loved us the fans to grasp the nettle as you put it.

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Four, five weeks past, there was a wonderfully enlightening conversation on BBC Scotland's Sportsound. Kenny McIntyre was hosting and Cosgrove, Spence, and English were pontificating with the usual sanctimonious piety. Both Jum and Big Stuarty were congratulating the Pars fans on their efforts, getting on with it and NOT blaming anyone else for their ills. Cosgrove got garrulous, he was delighted for Dunfermline and Pars fans, "they went round the pubs with buckets", they deserved to survive.

 

Kenny McIntyre said, "but you hate debt Stuart, you're a principled man". Cosgrove added, "yep debt is the problem, clubs not living within their means, Rangers and Gretna are examples of what's wrong". McIntyre could not resist, "Dunfermline's debt is £12.5million and the CVA is zero pence in the pound". Cosgrove squared the circle and exposed his prejudice by spitting, "ah the majority of that £12.5million is owed to one man, Gavin Masterton and I'm still delighted". Jum and English chorused support.

 

Naturally, I hope we stuff them, it's a matter of principle you know. Hey, I'm just like Big Stuarty.

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Why MacLeod and Peralta out wide? Neither deserve to keep their places.

 

That's not my team but the likely one the manager will pick.

 

As I touched on he may decide to rest/rotate a few players out in favour of others but their replacements have hardly been brilliant either so the status quo is most likely.

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