This blog has always kept an eye on what is going on across the city, and it always will. I make no apology for it, because everything that happens over there is connected to their single-minded purpose which is catching us and preferably before we reach the 10.
Celtic is well on course for that goal.
I personally do not see how they are going to stop us.
I got an email this morning, which consisted of a link to a Daily Record article and a question; “I thought they had no money?” You can guess what this is in reference to.
I sent back a two-word answer which I didn’t feel needed any further elaboration and it was simply this; “They don’t.”
And what further is there to say?
Nothing really, because it’s the only answer that I can realistically give.
I don’t know what is going on at Ibrox, but if they had suddenly appointed a billionaire to the board, or been gobbled up by some conglomerate in a hostile takeover, or they had held a successful share issue, or found the magic formula for alchemy we would know.
The Daily Record drools over the performance of a signing they’ve got on loan from Liverpool reserves, after he “starred” in a pre-season friendly and a game against a Tesco Frozen Food Section XI in Europe … so I think they’d report it if the Ibrox club had come into money.
They have no money.
There it is, I’ve said it again, and I’ll keep on saying it no matter how many times people fail to understand it, because it is true.
I do not claim to be a financial analyst, but you don’t need to be a financial analyst to understand basic numerology and business 101. A company that loses money will go broke unless one of two things happens; either it finds a way towards profitability, or its directors fund its operations and keep on the lights.
So far, directors are funding the operations.
How long can that continue?
How long is a piece of string?
The answer is “indefinitely” if they’ve got the money.
The answer could just as easily be that next week the whole thing comes to a shrieking standstill. As long as King can find a mug willing to pay the tab, they could keep on racking up debts until the proverbial cows come home.
Or so goes the theory, but of course in reality that’s not true either. Because there are people watching and those people include UEFA and they will not allow any club – big or small – to run up debts indefinitely when they insist on all others breaking even.
And if you think Celtic will simply watch from the side-lines as something as blatant as that happens then you need to think again.
The consequences for our directors would be bad enough if the Ibrox club ever win a title adhering to the rules and with full openness and transparency; the board will face anger on a hitherto unheard of pitch if it happens whilst the Ibrox operation is running on the same kind of financial steroids that allowed Rangers to win leagues.
Celtic is built to win leagues.
Our club is run on a sustainable basis. King thinks that one bad season will bring it all down. He is wrong, but he knows that one title win will provoke an angry backlash from our fans against the board that was asleep at the wheel.
But you know, even that is a backhanded compliment … because it will need a Celtic board to be asleep at the wheel.
Celtic is within touching distance of an historic goal.
I keep on meaning to explore this in detail, and at some point soon I will, but you need to think about that as more than just another title win with the attendant bragging rights that go with it.
Had my correspondent this morning asked me a different question; “What the Hell are they up to?” I would have given him a more expansive answer.
Let me give that answer to you now. Celtic’s quest, and our proximity to success, has driven them mad.
But if I were in their shoes, I might go a little mad myself.
As regular readers will know, I’m a history buff.
There are three key time-periods which I just find fascinating, and all of them are analogous with Scottish football at the current time; they are the period of Antiquity and, in particular, the rise of Rome; the Second World War, both the events leading to it and the conflict itself; and third and finally the Cold War, which has its roots in World War II.
I will save a full explanation for a later piece, but for now I’ll say this; Germany was all out of options when it invaded the Soviet Union in 1941.
The decision was a desperate throw of the dice from Hitler, at a time when he didn’t really have much choice.
That’s why the Ibrox club is behaving as it is right now.
They are all out of options.
Celtic has driven them mad because Celtic has driven them to the point of desperation.
King believes that this is it, that it’s now or never, that if he doesn’t stop us now he won’t be able to.
And you know what? He is right.
Celtic is on the brink, which means that he is on the brink.
A man with nothing to lose can afford to risk everything … in fact, he can’t afford not to.