In late 2011, Rangers issued a scathing press release denying that they were on the verge of going bust.
They had spent the entire campaign making that claim.
But they already knew their likely fate.
The summer before had seen them publicly boast that they’d turned down silly money for Nikica Jelavic.
This prompted Peter Lawwell’s notorious Gary Hooper offer quip.
In January 2012, Jelavic was sold for far less than the sum they’d allegedly turned down. Even then they would not admit that the club was in existential peril, although every single person at Ibrox was well aware of the chaos that was on the way.
But nowhere was the disconnect between fantasy and reality greater than when you consider that Rangers tried to sign a player whilst in administration. It was lunacy. The SFA did one of their few things right in the whole affair when they put a stop to it.
Do not ever expect sanity from people over there.
Do not ever expect them to do what makes sense.
They still hold to the old maxim – discredited widely– that a salesman in trouble should buy flashier suits, a more expensive car, project “the image of success” … and cross his fingers.
They appear not to have realised that this is an upscale version of the plot in just about every episode of Only Fools And Horses that the BBC ever made.
Today there is glee on the Ibrox fan sites because their club is heading for the millionaire’s playground of Dubai for the January break.
This is such madness it’s hard to know where to start.
It’s a toss-up between the stupidity of those who think this means they’re in good shape and the club itself, which is trying hard to pretend it has money its own accounts say isn’t there.
Look, as hard as this will be for some folk to believe, we aren’t making any of this up.
Sevco’s own accounts say they are skint.
They need £10 million in additional funding just to get through the rest of the season. That’s in there, in black and white, and only half of that money has been sourced – from King – and he hasn’t given cast iron assurances that he’ll pay it.
Sevco posted losses continuously since they were founded. Remember the spectacle of McCoist taking his players to five star hotels to prepare for Third Division games? This is that, only bigger, on a larger canvas.
This is ego, this is stupidity, this is an Ibrox club behaving exactly true to type, spending what it hasn’t got, digging the hole a little deeper.
Remember, this club knew it was sitting on this debt time-bomb when the season kicked off.
It didn’t stop them spending £7 million on Kent simply because we beat them in a derby.
This is what they do over there, they react to any adversity by puffing their chests out. It is macho lunacy, and I’ve seen it before; I’ve seen it at the poker table.
There is a certain kind of player in poker who you can easily draw into show-down after show-down until he or she is out of chips and out the door.
The kind who believes that he or she is obliged to go in hard when you challenge them to a head-to-head.
Is Sevco's Dubai Trip Really Fooling Anybody Into Thinking They Have Money?
If they call and you raise these people raise right back, regardless of what they have in their hands. If you go all-in it’s like a slap across their face. In they go along with you. I’ve seen these people bust out in games – and I’ve taken my share of scalps – over and over again.
Prick their egos a little bit and watch them lose their minds and all the chips with them.
I play online, but I don’t have to see their faces to recognise these folks.
You can spot them in the way they play. If you sit and watch the other players, if you play it safe until you’ve got the lay of the land, you can see them at every digital table … they are overly aggressive, reckless even.
They may win the occasional big one, but only in the same way a really good hitter but with bad plate discipline will swing at every baseball.
You’ll hit home runs … but you’ll strike out ten times for every one of them.
Mark my words, Sevco is acting up on a really weak hand. In some ways I understand it; the bluff isn’t even aimed at us, perhaps, but at the clubs who are circling their players. Who would believe they are desperate to sell when they are throwing money around?
They might even get away with it except that we all know what they are holding and those clubs do as well.
I have seen some reckless stuff in my time watching the behaviour of the two clubs who’ve played over there, but this really is one for the books. They are spending money the world knows they don’t have as a PR exercise.
Why don’t they just burn bales of it in the centre circle?
That club will go to the wall.
You cannot watch this unfolding lunacy and doubt it.
Please share these articles widely, and join our Facebook Group for discussions about the pieces and other issues.
If you have trouble finding the articles you can subscribe, follow us on Twitter and get every piece on Celtic News Now. And you can, of course, bookmark the site itself and check it for updates throughout the day.