Tag Archives: chairmen

Financial Fair Play: Premier League agree financial cap and clubs will face points deduction

Premier League agree financial cap and clubs will face points deduction if they breach new rules

By
Martyn Ziegler, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

12:21 GMT, 7 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

19:08 GMT, 7 February 2013

How Martin Samuel broke the story…

Martin Samuel revealed last month that Arsenal, Manchester United, Tottenham and Liverpool were looking to shackle the spending of Chelsea and Manchester City

Top-flight clubs will face a points deduction if they breach new spending controls agreed today, Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore has confirmed.

The 20 club chairmen agreed to two significant controls – to limit players' wage bills from next season, and longer-term measures that will restrict the amount of losses clubs can make to 105million over three years.

Clubs whose total wage bill is more than 52million will only be allowed to increase their wages by 4million per season for the next three years, though that cap does not cover extra money coming in from increases in commercial or matchday income.

The effect of the financial controls
should prevent hugely wealthy owners achieving the almost-overnight
success of Chelsea and Manchester City.

Moneybags: Man City have splashed the cash in their bid for Premier League domination

Moneybags: Man City have splashed the cash in their bid for Premier League domination

Rolling in it: Chelsea have spent hundreds of millions under Roman Abramovich

Rolling in it: Chelsea have spent hundreds of millions under Roman Abramovich

Any club breaching the rules will face tough sanctions – and Scudamore said they would be pushing for points deductions.

Scudamore told reporters: 'As all things in our rulebook you will subject to a disciplinary commission.
'The clubs understand that if people break the 105m we will look for the top-end ultimate sanction range – a points deduction.

'Normally we stay silent on sanctions
as the commission has a free range but clearly if there is a material
breach of that rule we will be asking the commission to consider top-end
sanctions.'

Scudamore said there would be an
'absolute prohibition' on clubs reporting losses of more than
105million over the next three years with the first sanctions possible
in 2016.

Of the 20 clubs in the top flight,
only Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool have reported losses of more
than 105million over the last three years, according to the most
up-to-date published accounts.

Scudamore said that the measures
would mean it will take longer for benefactor owners to achieve success –
but that it would still be possible.

He said: 'The balance we have tried
to strike is that a new owner can still invest a decent amount of money
to improve their club but they are not going to be throwing hundreds and
hundreds of millions in a very short period of time.

'While it has worked for a couple of
clubs in the last 10 years, and I am not critical of that, if that's
going to be done in the future it's going to have to be over a slightly
longer term without the huge losses being made.

FFP plans: The letter, revealed exclusively by Sportsmail's Martin Samuel, with the Arsenal header which says the proposed regulations do not go far enough

FFP plans: The letter, revealed exclusively by Sportsmail's Martin Samuel, with the Arsenal header which says the proposed regulations do not go far enough

Part two of the letter

'I think at 105million you can still
build a very decent club with substantial owner funding but you have to
do it over time, you can't do it in a season.'

'Chelsea won the Premier League two
years after Roman Abramovich's takeover, and Manchester City's title
success came three years after Sheik Mansour's takeover.'

Any club making any loss of over 5million a year will have guarantee those losses against the owner's assets.

'In some ways that's the most
significant part, this is a three-year rolling system of secure funding –
it's one year at the moment,' added Scudamore.

The ceiling when the wage increase
restrictions kick in will be 52million next season, 56million the
following year and 60million in 2015-16. Only seven of the current
top-flight clubs would be under that ceiling at the moment.

West Ham's co-owner David Gold said that the proposals for controls had received backing of the majority of chairmen.

He said: 'We have all voted and it
was overwhelmingly supported, not by all the clubs – some are a little
concerned – but the vast majority of the clubs voted in favour.

'It's not a salary cap, it's a
restraint on over-spending. If clubs increase their revenues then they
can increase their spending.

'We have got restraint, that's the important thing. What's driving the whole thing is we've got to avoid another Portsmouth.'

Premier League chairman divided over financial fair play regulations – Charles Sale

Charles Sale: Top flight divided on financial fair play ahead of summit

|

UPDATED:

23:21 GMT, 17 December 2012

There is considerable lobbying going on between the 20 Premier League clubs ahead of Tuesday’s chairmen’s summit over financial fair play (FFP), an issue that has split the elite division.

The PL executive, who need agreement from 14 clubs for rule changes, have put forward two proposals: a long-term broad acceptance of UEFA’s FFP break-even policy, and a shorter-term salary cap that will see clubs allowed only to increase wages by a gross 4million a year.

Supporters of the short-term plan are led by Sunderland’s Ellis Short — the first of the American owners to become so engaged in club business — and West Ham’s David Gold, who want a resolution passed before the January transfer window.

At speed: West Ham chief David Gold wants the situation resolved swiftly

At speed: West Ham chief David Gold wants the situation resolved swiftly

More from Charles Sale…

Charles Sale: Fight against the Hammers' Olympic stadium occupation will continue, says Hearn
15/12/12

Charles Sale: Net gain for Draper as LTA chief pockets 640k… four times more than the Prime Minister
13/12/12

Charles Sale: Arsenal follow United's lead by claiming packed stadium despite rows of empty seats at Emirates
12/12/12

Charles Sale: Leeds anxious as buyers GFH Capital fail to pay on time
12/12/12

Charles Sale: Portsmouth's court date with destiny could end in extinction
07/12/12

Charles Sale: Diamond League can add some sparkle to Stratford before the bulldozers move in
06/12/12

Charles Sale: Hearn is ready to throw in the towel over West Ham's Olympic Stadium move
05/12/12

Charles Sale: Channel 4 races to unload World Athletics Championships on the BBC
30/11/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Manchester United’s David Gill, Tottenham’s Daniel Levy and Arsenal’s Ivan Gazidis head those in favour of the long-term solution along UEFA lines.

Meanwhile, the four clubs most opposed to any FFP restrictions — Manchester City, West Bromwich, Fulham and Aston Villa — are under pressure to change their view that no interference works best.

Finance snub for live football

The BBC are understood to have spent well over 1m on their Sports Personality of the Year night at London’s ExCeL. Yet despite their lack of live football, the Beeb felt it too expensive to send a commentator to Japan for the Club World Cup final the same day.

Guy Mowbray, who was at the Stoke-Everton game the day before, did the commentary of Chelsea’s defeat by Corinthians in Yokohama from the television, which does not say much for the Beeb’s commitment to the national sport.

The BBC say they gained the rights for the tournament at short notice and sending a commentary team was not deemed worth it, especially with the focus on SPOTY.

Becks will wait until new year

David Beckham — whose appearance at Sports Personality to announce that Lord Coe had won the lifetime achievement award was a surprise even to the recipient — is not expected to make a decision on his playing future until after Christmas. But wherever he plays, his family will be based in London.

Meanwhile, British cycling overlord David Brailsford, tipped for a knighthood in the New Year honours, is expected to join Beckham, Andy Murray and Lewis Hamilton in Simon Fuller’s XIX sports management stable with Sir Clive Woodward when the tie-up between XIX and Brailsford and Woodward’s agent Tim Buttimore is finalised.

Waiting: David Beckham will wait until next year before deciding his future

Waiting: David Beckham will wait until next year before deciding his future

The big freeze

Sport England froze 10.3million on Monday, three years’ worth of Lawn Tennis Association grass-roots funding, with chief executive Jennie Price saying damningly: ‘Tennis has not performed well in terms of participation. Their plan simply wasn’t strong enough to justify the four-year investment.’

Yet the LTA have awarded a 640,000 package to chief executive Roger Draper for 2012, including a 201,000 bonus. An LTA spokesperson said: ‘This is not an appropriate comparison.’

Channel 4’s Rio rights

Sports Personality elevated the Paralympics to unprecedented heights. But that will not be enough for the BBC to reclaim TV rights for Rio 2016.

The International Paralympic Committee have opted to stay with Channel 4, with an announcement due soon. US network NBC, whose coverage of London’s Paralympics was minimal, are showing more interest for Brazil.

Turn over: Paralympians like David Weir will be on Channel 4 in Rio

Turn over: Paralympians like David Weir will be on Channel 4 in Rio

One love for Wiggins

Bradley Wiggins, Sports Personality winner in a stellar year with the charisma to join the band on stage at the SPOTY after-party, could have his pick of sponsors. But he prefers to have only his beloved Fred Perry Mod clothing deal, with all other endorsements worked through his Team Sky contract.

Youngsters living the high life

The FA spent 100m on their acclaimed national centre at St George’s Park that includes two hotels. But bizarrely, no dormitory accommodation, more suited to the junior sides, was factored into the planning, meaning youngsters must be given the run of the plush hotel rooms. The short-term plan when junior tournaments are taking place at SGP is to use dormitories at nearby public school Repton.

Manchester United want stronger financial controls in Premier League

Man United pushing for stronger financial controls as the 20 club chairmen meet

|

UPDATED:

21:14 GMT, 14 November 2012

Manchester United will step up their campaign for greater financial controls in the Premier League on Thursday.

United are one of the prime movers in an effort to extend spending controls, similar to UEFA's financial fair play regulations, throughout England's top flight.

Thursday's meeting of the 20 club chairmen will flesh out the details of the proposals.

Plans: Manchester United want financial restraints in place

Plans: Manchester United want financial restraints in place

One possible measure would see clubs being obliged to break even, but to give greater flexibility for wealthy owners to put money – not loans – into clubs than is allowed under UEFA's rules.

The clubs will also consider some sort of wage control measure, not a salary cap but a way in which to try to ensure the riches which will arrive next season courtesy of the new 3billion TV deal will not immediately be swallowed up in player salary increases.

In a conference call on Wednesday to outline United's first-quarter financial performance, club executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said the rules would prevent clubs making huge annual losses.

'It is not trying to restrict teams from competing for players,' Woodward said. 'The reality is Premier League teams, as a collective group of 20 clubs, are extremely well off compared to other European teams.

'We are trying to impose some
parameters about how clubs use the funds they are receiving from the
collective so we don't end up with a lot of clubs making annual and
regular losses.'

Chelsea
returned a small profit last week, the first time in the Abramovich era
they had not made a considerable loss, but United's other major rival,
Manchester City, could suffer from cost-control measures as they have
had huge losses in recent years.

Profit: Chelsea made a profit for the first year under Abramovich

Profit: Chelsea made a profit for the first year under Abramovich

Woodward added: 'We are supportive of proposals broadly mirroring financial fair play which we abide by already.

'Those discussions have developed. There is a meeting this week with the Premier League to continue dialogue around that.

'A number of different parameters are being discussed, one of which is break even.'

West Ham flying high but will fans learn to love Sam Allardyce?

With Arsenal, Spurs and Liverpool up next for high-flying Hammers, when will fans learn to love Big Sam

|

UPDATED:

09:47 GMT, 12 November 2012

Into the top six. Ahead of Arsenal and Tottenham. And Newcastle. And Liverpool.

They started last November with a 0-0 draw at home to Bristol City and this November with a 0-0 draw at home to champions Manchester City and a 1-0 away win at Newcastle.

After the barren years of Gianfranco Zola and Avram Grant (considered as Chelsea 'plants' by some fans), West Ham are back in business.

Scroll down to video

Big Sam doing his best grizzly bear impression alongside Alan Pardew as West Ham win 1-0 at Newcastle

Big Sam doing his best grizzly bear impression alongside Alan Pardew as West Ham win 1-0 at Newcastle

HAMMERS ON THE MARCH

Newcastle 0 West Ham 1 – read Colin Young's match report HERE

With a captain signed and paid for by the chairman outside of the of the club's budget and a manager who many fans didn't want. And, bizarrely, some still don't.

What will it take for West ham fans to fall for Sam Allardyce

They don't chant his name. In fact, the last manager to be revered by the West Ham faithful was Alan Pardew, who was sacked.

Now he has taken West Ham to promotion via the play-offs and into the top six, will supporters recognise his value

As Southampton and Reading, two teams who finished above West Ham in the Championship last season, continue to falter and sit in the bottom three, Big Sam is riding high.

Shake on it: Pardew was the last West Ham manager to be celebrated by the home fans

Shake on it: Pardew was the last West Ham manager to be cheered by the home fans

Reading did the double over West Ham last season and Southampton took four points from them, leaving West Ham to beat Blackpool 2-1 in a tense play-off final. And Allardyce was blamed when the 'Manchester United' of the Championship – the club with the biggest budget and biggest gates – failed to get up automatically.

Instead, Allardyce went back to the drawing board and, working with ambitious co-chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold, came up with a transfer strategy.
While they tried – and failed – to land players such as Wilfried Zaha, they still added quality to their squad.

Allardyce has built their success this season on a mean defence and skilled set pieces routines. As well as Kevin Nolan's goals (five in the Barclays premier League so far – one less than Marouane Fellaini) and Andy Carroll's battering-ram talents.

Matchwinner and West Ham captain Kevin Nolan salutes the away fans after his goal

Matchwinner and West Ham captain Kevin Nolan salutes the away fans after his goal

Mark Noble of West Ham celebrates at the final whistle

James Tomkins of West Ham celebrates at the final whistle

Homegrown and happy: Noble (left) and Tomkins (right) celebrate the unlikely win at Newcastle

Only Stoke and Manchester City have conceded less goals in the Premier League and the shut-out at Newcastle was their fifth this season in what was their second away win.

And all this has been with back four made up mainly of cast-offs.

Jussi Jaaskelainen, their goalkeeper, came on a free after Bolton were relegated and eager to see the back of him. He had lost his place and Bolton fans said his kicking and communication was shot to pieces.

So too Joey O'Brien, who was another Big Sam player from Botlon. Why is he signing all these former players, was the question. Another clean sheet is the answer.

The fans loved him at Bolton: Allardyce, complete with hat and flag in 2004

The fans loved him at Bolton: Allardyce, complete with hat and flag in 2004

George McCartney came on a free from Sunderland after a loan spell last season and James Collins joined Winston Reid and James Tomkins to compete for places at the heart of the back four.

In total, West Ham's back five who played against Newcastle, including the goalkeeper, cost Winston Reid's transfer fee: 3.2million. Is there a cheaper defence in the top flight

Mohamed Diame, signed from, Wigan for 2m, has played well in patches and continues to grow; the style of play is a mixture of launching it in and playing on the deck.

There is variation and, in Mark Noble, they have one of the most improved players in the league. Surely an England call beckons. Certainly, it seems strange that Tom Huddlestone has been called up ahead of him for the friendly in Sweden this week.

Nolan is congratulated by Andy Carroll after scoring the only goal at their former club

Nice to be back here: Nolan is congratulated by Andy Carroll after scoring the only goal at their former club

Although record signing Matt Jarvis has yet to fire, Yossi Benayoun is beneftting from a regular starting place, rather than the big-part role he occupied at Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal. So much so that Ricardo Vaz Te hasn't been missed, after dislocating his shoulder.

So will West Ham fans finally accept Allardyce, considered the High Priest of long ball football from his early days as a manager

Paradise by Coldplay is aired before every game at Upton Park and could easily be adopted by supporters. 'Alla-Alla-Allardyce.' Beat Stoke and you never know.

Roman Abramovich and Glazers aiming to stop footballers earning mega money

EXCLUSIVE: Millionaire owners plot new rule to stop players and agents pocketing profits from 5bn TV deal

|

UPDATED:

10:19 GMT, 4 November 2012

Premier League owners, including Roman Abramovich and the Glazer family, are close to agreeing a crackdown on players’ wages.

Talks have already taken place between all 20 top-flight clubs about introducing their own version of financial fairplay and a formal outline could be agreed later this month when Premier League chairmen meet in London on November 15.

There is a growing desire among the Premier League’s international owners to keep a big slice of what could be 5billion from the new television deals that start next year, rather than see it all go to players and their agents.

On board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a dealOn board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a deal

On board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a deal

They are about to agree new rules on ‘wage restraint’, prohibiting clubs from increasing their wage bill by more than five per cent annually. Clubs spent 1.5bn on wages in 2010-11, 69 per cent of their income, and they had debts of 2.4bn, more than the amount they brought in.

Among the more radical proposals is that member clubs should be made to break even, something that even UEFA’s fairplay rules do not insist on. And West Ham chairman David Gold wants a points deduction for those whose debt exceeds a certain level of turnover.

Significantly, there is a will among even the richest owners — Abramovich at Chelsea and Sheik Mansour at Manchester City — to stop making huge losses. And the new breed of American owners — John W Henry (Liverpool), Ellis Short (Sunderland), Stan Kroenke (Arsenal), the Glazers (Manchester United) and Randy Lerner (Aston Villa) — are desperate to see a return on their investment.

Premier League clubs made cumulative losses of 361million, according to figures for 2010-11, with City (197m), Chelsea (68m), and Liverpool (49m), most in the red.

Listening: The Glazer family want a return on their investment

Listening: The Glazer family want a return on their investment

An historic agreement by clubs would mark the end of escalating salaries enjoyed by elite players since the Premier League began in 1992. And that would be welcomed by ordinary fans who feel the gravy train has created a generation of stars who are out of touch.

/11/03/article-0-01C5982600000514-699_468x286.jpg” width=”468″ height=”286″ alt=”Potential: Manchester city owner Sheikh Mansour (centre) and his fellow owners could be part of a historic deal” class=”blkBorder” />

Potential: Manchester city owner Sheikh Mansour (centre) and his fellow owners could be part of a historic deal

Executives from all top-flight clubs met in September in three regional meetings. But the get-together in 11 days is the first real chance for formal progress.

Fourteen of the 20 clubs have to agree to a new rule and it is believed only Fulham are explicitly against any form of financial fairplay, with chairman Mohamed Fayed worried the restrictions would deter a potential buyer in the future.

UEFA FFP rules allow clubs to make losses of €45m over three years. Many would like it to be compulsory for clubs to break even but a compromise might have to be reached.

Clubs like City, who have invested hugely since a takeover in 2008, would be given time to meet requirements and newly-promoted clubs would also be given dispensation on the five-per-cent wage rule.

With negotiations at a delicate stage, most chairmen are reluctant to go into too much detail, but West Ham’s Gold was candid for the website, Huffington Post.

Regulation: David Gold spoke candidly

Regulation: David Gold spoke candidly

‘We need to regulate spending, reduce debt and ensure profit — and quickly,’ he said. ‘We have to stop clubs running up debt or we’ll have an even more desperate situation. We can’t have clubs running with large percentage of debt against their turnover.

‘The lower leagues have implemented new regulation, and the Premier League must do the same.

‘I would propose that there is a robust and clear debt cap — enforced by a transfer ban on incoming players or a points deduction.

‘Of the bottom 12 clubs in the PL most will lose money and three will be relegated. But with proper governance, those 12 clubs, including the three to be relegated, could make 100m. It’s infinitely more desirable to get relegated having made 10m than having lost 10m.’

Premier League owners hatch plot to stop footballers earning mega money, including Roman Abramovic and Glazer family

EXCLUSIVE: Millionaire owners plot new rule to stop players and agents pocketing profits from 5bn TV deal

|

UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 3 November 2012

Premier League owners, including Roman Abramovich and the Glazer family, are close to agreeing a crackdown on players’ wages.

Talks have already taken place between all 20 top-flight clubs about introducing their own version of financial fairplay and a formal outline could be agreed later this month when Premier League chairmen meet in London on November 15.

There is a growing desire among the Premier League’s international owners to keep a big slice of what could be 5billion from the new television deals that start next year, rather than see it all go to players and their agents.

On board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a dealOn board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a deal

On board: Big names like Roman Abramovich are close to agreeing a deal

They are about to agree new rules on ‘wage restraint’, prohibiting clubs from increasing their wage bill by more than five per cent annually. Clubs spent 1.5bn on wages in 2010-11, 69 per cent of their income, and they had debts of 2.4bn, more than the amount they brought in.

Among the more radical proposals is that member clubs should be made to break even, something that even UEFA’s fairplay rules do not insist on. And West Ham chairman David Gold wants a points deduction for those whose debt exceeds a certain level of turnover.

Significantly, there is a will among even the richest owners — Abramovich at Chelsea and Sheik Mansour at Manchester City — to stop making huge losses. And the new breed of American owners — John W Henry (Liverpool), Ellis Short (Sunderland), Stan Kroenke (Arsenal), the Glazers (Manchester United) and Randy Lerner (Aston Villa) — are desperate to see a return on their investment.

Premier League clubs made cumulative losses of 361million, according to figures for 2010-11, with City (197m), Chelsea (68m), and Liverpool (49m), most in the red.

Listening: The Glazer family want a return on their investment

Listening: The Glazer family want a return on their investment

An historic agreement by clubs would mark the end of escalating salaries enjoyed by elite players since the Premier League began in 1992. And that would be welcomed by ordinary fans who feel the gravy train has created a generation of stars who are out of touch.

/11/03/article-0-01C5982600000514-699_468x286.jpg” width=”468″ height=”286″ alt=”Potential: Manchester city owner Sheikh Mansour (centre) and his fellow owners could be part of a historic deal” class=”blkBorder” />

Potential: Manchester city owner Sheikh Mansour (centre) and his fellow owners could be part of a historic deal

Executives from all top-flight clubs met in September in three regional meetings. But the get-together in 11 days is the first real chance for formal progress.

Fourteen of the 20 clubs have to agree to a new rule and it is believed only Fulham are explicitly against any form of financial fairplay, with chairman Mohamed Fayed worried the restrictions would deter a potential buyer in the future.

UEFA FFP rules allow clubs to make losses of €45m over three years. Many would like it to be compulsory for clubs to break even but a compromise might have to be reached.

Clubs like City, who have invested hugely since a takeover in 2008, would be given time to meet requirements and newly-promoted clubs would also be given dispensation on the five-per-cent wage rule.

With negotiations at a delicate stage, most chairmen are reluctant to go into too much detail, but West Ham’s Gold was candid for the website, Huffington Post.

Regulation: David Gold spoke candidly

Regulation: David Gold spoke candidly

‘We need to regulate spending, reduce debt and ensure profit — and quickly,’ he said. ‘We have to stop clubs running up debt or we’ll have an even more desperate situation. We can’t have clubs running with large percentage of debt against their turnover.

‘The lower leagues have implemented new regulation, and the Premier League must do the same.

‘I would propose that there is a robust and clear debt cap — enforced by a transfer ban on incoming players or a points deduction.

‘Of the bottom 12 clubs in the PL most will lose money and three will be relegated. But with proper governance, those 12 clubs, including the three to be relegated, could make 100m. It’s infinitely more desirable to get relegated having made 10m than having lost 10m.’

Manchester United chief David Gill named as FA vice-chairman

United chief executive Gill named as FA vice-chairman

|

UPDATED:

17:36 GMT, 18 October 2012

Manchester United's chief executive David Gill has been appointed as a vice-chairman of the Football Association.

The 55-year-old was put forward by the Professional Game Board to replace Premier League chairman Sir Dave Richards in the role. The recommendation was endorsed by the FA Board and then approved by the FA Council.

New job: United chief executive David Gill

New job: United chief executive David Gill

Gill said: 'I'm delighted to have been appointed vice-chairman of the Football Association. The health and success of the Football Association is vital to the future of the game in England and I hope to justify the board's faith in me by helping to shape discussions and actions to deliver that.'

Gill, an FA board member for six years, will join Roger Burden, who represents the amateur game, as one of two FA vice-chairmen.
He is also the FA's nomination for the UEFA executive committee at the elections in May.

United we stand: Gill and Sir Alex Ferguson last year

United we stand: Gill and Sir Alex Ferguson last year

Rangers: Ally McCoist respects decision to start in third division

Our journey back starts here, rallies McCoist as Rangers are dumped in bottom tier

|

UPDATED:

22:01 GMT, 13 July 2012

Ally McCoist insists he respects the decision of the Scottish Football League to force Rangers to begin life in the bottom tier.

The newco was voted in to the league by all but one of the clubs before 25 of the 30 elected to send them to the Third Division.

And McCoist had reportedly gone as far as to ask the assembled chairmen for the chance to begin again in the fourth tier.

Time to move on: Ally McCoist is pleased a decision has been made

Time to move on: Ally McCoist is pleased a decision has been made

‘I fully accept the decision of the SFL today and thank them for allowing us into the SFL,’ he said.

‘Clearly, starting from the bottom is not ideal and makes the task of rebuilding Rangers a longer one, but the SFL was placed in an impossible situation and I respect its decision.

‘I fully support the fans’ views that starting again in Division Three maintains the sporting integrity that the SPL clubs were so keen on.

‘The SPL clubs and the SFA have made their positions clear over the past few weeks and it remains to be seen what the long-term effects of their decisions will be.

‘Rangers have been severely punished for the actions of some individuals who previously ran the club and it will take time to recover. But we will come back stronger thanks to the loyalty of the fans and the commitment of everyone at Ibrox working tirelessly to bring back stability and success.’

Announcement: David Longmuir (centre) officially seals Rangers' fate

Announcement: David Longmuir (centre) officially seals Rangers' fate

As Rangers fans scan the road maps to Annan, Peterhead and the like, however, the tin lid has not quite been closed on this can of worms.

Charles Green still needs his Sevco company to obtain SFA membership before it can begin life down among the dead men. If suggestions that a condition of this will be to agree to take the historical punishments of the old club, then there is certainly an awkward hurdle yet to clear.

Seemingly, Green told the 30 chairmen that SFA membership would be granted only in the event of the club being pushed into the First Division. Quite why the block would be put on a club entering two divisions below is unclear, but it is hard to take issue with the Yorkshireman’s take that his club had now suffered the ‘ultimate punishment’.

There was widespread acceptance that not only had the correct decision been made, but it was also final.

Up in the air: Dundee Chief Executive Scott Gardiner arrives at Hampden

Up in the air: Dundee Chief Executive Scott Gardiner arrives at Hampden

A trip to Brechin or Forfar — depending on whether Dundee or Dunfermline are promoted to the SPL — on July 28 in the Ramsdens Cup (while Celtic entertain Inter Milan) will be Rangers’ first engagement as a Third Division club, followed on August 11 by their league bow at Peterhead, before a home match with East Stirlingshire a week later. It is beyond surreal.

Those who intend to follow, follow will rack up far more miles than they would have done in the SPL. Only four of Rangers’ opponents — the Shire, Clyde, Stirling Albion and Queen’s Park — are within short travelling distance.

As well as the Blue Toon, Elgin and Montrose mean long treks north, while not one of Stranraer, Annan and Berwick Rangers are within two hours of Ibrox in the other direction. It is going to be a season like no other.

Just try getting a ticket for that game at Balmoor next month, the day on which history will be made. Even the visit of the Shire might threaten the Ibrox capacity. People love a novelty, after all.

Rangers voted into Third Division

Get out of here! Rangers thrown down to Third Division after clubs vote against stricken club

|

UPDATED:

16:03 GMT, 13 July 2012

Rangers will start the new season in the Irn-Bru Third Division following a vote by Scottish Football League chairmen at Hampden.

The 30 SFL teams were voting on whether Charles Green's newco Rangers should enter the league and which division they should be placed in.

The Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football Association were hopeful Rangers would be parachuted into the First Division, with SFA chief executive Stewart Regan claiming that putting the Ibrox club into the Third Division would bring financial catastrophe and a 'slow, lingering death' of the game.

See ya: Alloa director Ewen Cameron (left), SFL president Jim Ballantyne (centre) and SFL chief executive David Longmuir announce the verdict on Rangers

See ya: Alloa director Ewen Cameron (left), SFL president Jim Ballantyne (centre) and SFL chief executive David Longmuir announce the verdict on Rangers

WHO RANGERS WILL PLAY

Annan Athletic, Berwick, Clyde, East Stirling, Elgin, Montrose, Peterhead, Queens Park, Stirling, Stranraer

Twenty-nine of the 30 SFL clubs accepted Rangers as an associate member of the Scottish Football League while 25 clubs voted in favour of placing the newco team into the bottom tier.

SFL chief executive David Longmuir said: 'The member clubs of the Scottish Football League have today voted to willingly accept The Rangers Football Club as an associate member of the Scottish Football League.

'Furthermore, the Scottish Football League's only acceptable position will be to place Rangers FC into the Third Division of the Irn-Bru Scottish Football League from the start of this season.'

Longmuir also stated that he was 'comfortable' with the outcome of the vote and that the decision from the SFL clubs was taken with the sport's best interests at heart.

He said: 'I'm comfortable today that the Scottish Football League made a very, very decisive decision that was based on sporting fairness and I think the Scottish Football League were in the right place to make that decision.

'This decision followed a
tried-and-tested process and was taken in cognisance with the other
options which were available for consideration.

'Today's
decision has been one of the most difficult for all concerned but it
has been taken in the best interest of sporting fairness which is the
fundamental principle of the Scottish Football League.

Only way: The clubs voted overwhelmingly against Rangers

Only way: The clubs voted overwhelmingly against Rangers

'The Scottish Football League has been entirely consistent with our willingness to work with other bodies to ensure that we focus on rebuilding our game, restoring pride in our game and exploring revenue streams and our willingness to achieve these aims does not alter.'

Raith Rovers chairman Turnbull Hutton revealed that Green, Regan and Rangers manager Ally McCoist addressed the meeting and said: 'It was a good meeting that was handled well and all the issues came out. There was also a good hearing for those who came into the meeting.

'The league made a decision and I
think it was the right decision and the right process and I'm proud to
be a member of the Scottish Football League.'

Dunfermline
chairman John Yorkston said it would not be a shock to see the SFA and
SPL formulating plans for an SPL2, something which has already been
mooted.

'That wouldn't surprise me,' he added.
'The 10 First Division clubs sent out a message today saying that we are
looking for a 42-club solution, the vote was 25 to five so I think that
was fairly unanimous.'

What now Rangers boss Ally McCoist

What now Rangers boss Ally McCoist

Yorkston was echoing Longmuir's comments which made up part of the statement read to the gathered media.

Longmuir said: 'Something I would like to say very clearly today is that he First Division clubs in particular made it very clear to us that they are looking for an all 42-club solution to Scottish football's restructuring issue – that was a very clear direction of the will of all SFL clubs.'

A statement on the official Rangers website confirmed discussions over forming an SPL2 were still up in the air.

The statement read: 'It was mooted last week that plans for an SPL2 would swing into action in the event of today's outcome but it is not known if this will be the case.'

However Livingston chairman Gordon McDougall does not believe such a breakaway will take place.

'I don't think there is any chance of that,' he said. 'We all want a 42-club solution to this situation with all 42 clubs working together for football but I have no idea what is likely to happen.

'We have made a decision, I sincerely hope the decision is respected and we go forward with Rangers in the Third Division. Ally McCoist and Charles Green were adamant that they would respect our decision.'

Asked if he was surprised by the 25-5 vote he said: 'Not after discussions took place. If you had asked me last night I would not have come to that figure.

'Discussions went well, we listened to everything that was said and we are quite happy.'

Rangers in crisis: Ibrox fans demand answers

Ibrox outcry! Rangers fans demand answers amidst doomsday fears

|

UPDATED:

21:54 GMT, 27 June 2012

Rangers fans have called on new owner Charles Green to end fears of an Ibrox doomsday scenario — where the club fail to exist in any form by next season.

Irate supporters protested outside Ibrox as concerns rose over the ability of Green’s Sevco 5088 consortium to meet the running costs of the club.

And the crowd was addressed by former club favourite John Brown, who revealed he is fronting a bid by supporters to buy-out Green.

Protest: Rangers fans are growing increasingly concerned about their club

Protest: Rangers fans are growing increasingly concerned about their club

After being effectively kicked out of the SPL by rival chairmen, newco Rangers now look doomed to apply for a place in the Third Division after increasing numbers of SFL chairmen voiced their opposition to the Ibrox club being parachuted into the First.

Against a worrying silence from Green, the long-suffering Rangers fans’ new fear is their club could be heading for administration for the second time in four months — and is ultimately bound for oblivion.

‘The new season is drawing very close and Rangers are in a very grave situation,’ said John Macmillan, general secretary of Rangers Supporters Association.

Disillusioned: Rangers fans are far from happy with Charles Green's ownership

Disillusioned: Rangers fans are far from happy with Charles Green's ownership

‘It’s time for Charles Green to allay the worries of the Rangers fans who are now fearing the very worst.

‘He needs to be transparent and show he’s got the money to take the club forward.

‘I’ve always had concerns that Mr Green doesn’t have the money and that’s why I asked fans not to renew season tickets until there’s more concrete information available.

‘Mr Green hasn’t done enough to win the trust of the fans, yet.
‘The fans are in the dark.’

We want answers: Rangers look set to be relegated to the Third Division

We want answers: Rangers look set to be relegated to the Third Division

Macmillan says Rangers fans are also unhappy with their players for quitting the club this week for free, rather than allowing their contracts to transfer to the newco.

‘The fans are bitterly disappointed by the players’ actions,’ he said. ‘They hoped the players would have earned Rangers a bit of money, but they have been a bit selfish. The fans expected loyalty, especially from people like Steven Naismith who was well looked after when he was injured.

‘The fans appreciate these players don’t want to play in the First or Third Division, but they could have shown a bit of loyalty by helping the club get a transfer fee.’

Plan: Former Rangers player John Brown rallies the crowd outside Ibrox

Plan: Former Rangers player John Brown rallies the crowd outside Ibrox

Meanwhile, Rangers’ hopes of a soft landing in the First Division appear doomed after Morton joined Raith Rovers, Falkirk, Peterhead, Montrose and Annan Athletic as officially saying ‘no to newco’.

Sportsmail believes Livingston, Partick Thistle and Dunfermline are also poised to follow that lead, amid pressure from their own fans, while a significant number of other SFL clubs polled by this newspaper are eventually expected to cast a ‘no’ vote.

Morton chairman Douglas Rae said: ‘If it comes down to a vote, I will be voting for Rangers to go to the Third Division.’