Yesterday, after writing that the Daily Record was at it again and attempting to drum up phony support for the league reconstruction plans which don’t exist, imagine my surprise to read a piece in the Evening Times which wasn’t trying to invent reality but was trying to deny it instead.
Media outlets have spent the last few weeks telling us that a Dave King “fit and proper person” verdict was “imminent.”
Yesterday was the turn of Christopher Jack, writing in the Herald Group’s Glasgow daily, to offer his view that it would be decided “within 48 hours.”
It seems that King and his people have finally found the missing piece of paperwork they need to get the matter dealt with and submitted it to the SFA for final approval.
All well and good, except for this caveat;
“But King’s case is far more complicated as the SFA delved into his tax issues in South Africa and role at Ibrox during Craig Whyte’s tenure four years ago to determine if he had breached any of the eleven ‘red flags’ in their Articles of Association.”
Hold the bus here … but what is exactly is to be “determined”?
King was given fines the equal of an 80 year jail sentence over there.
He sat on the board when Craig Whyte drove the club into oblivion.
He violates umpteen of their rules, setting off more red flags than the US Weather Service.
These things are no longer in dispute.
The decision the SFA has to make isn’t “Did Dave King breach the rules?”
The decision is “Are we going to ignore the fact he broke the rules and let him serve on the board regardless?”
This isn’t rocket science. This isn’t remotely complicated.
If the SFA follows its own regulations – as they are set down – then he’s toast.
If they choose to violate those rules, allowing him to serve on the Sevco board anyway, then they have serious questions to answer.
Without fear or favour. That’s how rules must be applied.
Otherwise you wind up in the perverse situation where people think they can violate them at will.
The last couple of years at Ibrox have been a full-on lesson in that principle.
The same people pushing this notion – that King might not really have fallen foul of those rules after all – are the same people pushing the flat-out lie that he needs the SFA’s approval before he can start “investing his money” in the Ibrox club.
That particular line is a favourite of our friend Keith over at The Record, but I’ve read it papers all across the media and I’ve heard it repeated on national radio, although it does not bear the slightest resemblance to the actual position.
Mike Ashley has proved that you can wield influence although not serving on the board.
He has loaned the club money, he has invested time, he has appointed directors and he has even now called for an EGM, all from the relative peace and harmony of England.
(When Glasgow police are kicking in doors, anyway ….)
The notion that King couldn’t do the same, running things through his stooge Paul Murray, is offensive to our collective intelligence.
Yet the reasons why this line is being pumped out are obvious enough; three months on from the Great Takeover, the club is still living a hand-to-mouth existence.
They still don’t have a Nominated Advisor.
They are no longer trading on AIM.
Not one penny has actually be invested in the club itself; even the cash that’s keeping on the lights has been made available, by the directors, in the form of short term loans.
Board room trips to London, to seek fresh capital, have been met with cold shoulders, turned backs and deaf ears.
The club is seen, outside Scotland, as a shambles and its ability to make profits for investors is non-existent.
It’s an institutional basket-case.
In spite of all this, the media continues to fantasise about the day they climb out of the lower tiers and into the SPL, as though that league needs them, as though they would be a challenge to the likes of Celtic, Aberdeen, Hearts, Inverness and others.
The one thing the hacks can rely on – and it frustrates me enormously – is the long line of former players and officials who keep on telling us, over and over again, that they want to see them “back in the top flight”, as if the club had once actually played there.
Tomorrow night they play Hibs, in a must-win match at Ibrox.
Without a sterling victory, they will go to Easter Road in serious peril of missing out on promotion, which is why league reconstruction talk has raised its head again in recent weeks.
Needless to say, I hope they get well and truly turned over.
(Today the SFA graned Dave King fit and proper person status in a wholly corrupt result. Read our piece on it, and the piece from On Fields of Green.)