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November Will See Sevco Finally Admit To The Size Of The Hole They Are In.

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Football is all about uncertainty. It is unpredictable, which is one of the reasons we love it.

Nothing in it as sewn up as “death and taxes”.

The club at Ibrox is the proof of it. Death has already come for a club which plays there. Taxes can be deferred but not denied. Fail to pay them and the Second Death may well follow. We’re about to find out how close that is.

Sevco was born spending money it didn’t have. That’s been the way of Ibrox clubs for as long as I can remember.

Last season they triumphed on the pitch. The full story of how they did it is as shrouded in secrecy as the one about how they pay their bills. Some of the facts will come out in time; there are no secrets anymore, simply untold truths waiting to be discovered.

Much of football has already owned up to the mess the virus and the global health emergency wrought on the balance sheets up and down the land. Clubs are dealing with the damage in different ways.

The curiosity is that there might have been an element here of Survival of the Unfittest; the clubs which lost least from lockdown were those that had least to lose.

The Ibrox board kept on spending as if none of it was happening.

It is inconceivable that long term damage has not been done to Sevco as a result of that. We won’t get the full picture this month but we’ll get a sense of it. Because they are almost out of time for publishing those long-awaited accounts.

They can’t delay much longer. November is it.

Phil Mac Giolla Bhain indicated in a piece last month that there is real concern inside Ibrox about those accounts and what they mean.

He scorched the idea – as I did here – that they will be in “profit making” territory next year, as their CEO suggested to a fan meeting and pointed out that is almost certainly for public relations purposes, a sop when the fans find out how big the hole is.

But fooling their own supporters for a while is not going to do it for them.

They are going to have to start dealing with some of the harsh realities which they were able to deny in the quest to stop us from winning ten in a row. Who knows what elaborate arrangements they made with “investors”, and who knows what the price of them will be?

They presumed Champions League qualification; that didn’t come, and that has to have hurt, and virtually assured losses for another year, especially as they weren’t able to shift any of their second rate junk for the high prices they’d been hoping for.

All those players remain on the books.

The media never talks about what their indifferent start to the season means in that regard; it means that they will be lucky to get offers for any of them in January, when the need will be great and the club almost on its chin-strap.

Some of the creditors will wait.

Others will be reluctant to push too hard for fear of toppling the whole thing over.

But those, like HMRC, who are not in the business of waiting around for the Peepul to get a proper sense of their priorities will be setting deadlines which are not negotiable, and they won’t care how much crying and wailing goes on as a result.

They will not care what the consequences are for player budgets and transfer funds or what arrogant English ex-footballers-cum-coaches think of the restrictions that they impose. They will not care what the egotists in Ibrox’s stands make of an age of austerity.

Ibrox faces its own exodus of players in the summer, as a few retire and others come to the ends of their deals.

These players will, in all likelihood, not be replaced.

Change is coming to that club, and their management team is going to have to become accustomed to the concept of doing more with less.

I suspect they won’t like it.

What would austerity at Ibrox look like? We can’t say for sure, because they’ve never talked seriously about such a thing far less actually attempted it. The idea of that club living within its means is an alien concept to them. But it’s coming.

Although the Ibrox CEO was running game on the fans when he made his “in profit” prediction, he wasn’t entirely taking the piss. I have little doubt that their board wants to see the club reach that state of play, but I wonder if they have the stomach for what it means.

One thing is clear; they have lost the stomach for carrying massive losses.

Whoever paid for the carnage inflicted on them last season, it wasn’t the usual suspects. The answer as to who it actually was – and what they want – will determine what state that club is in for the next few years and beyond.

The hard choices will start in January. They will still bet big on Champions League cash, but if they don’t win this league the real pain starts in the summer and they might find that it’s not just for one campaign, but for a long time to come.

This month, we’re going to get a glimpse of their future; from their perspective, it will not be pretty.

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8 comments

  • Barry says:

    The squinty glib was to be paid £6.5M by the end of last month. Once that happened, it then triggered a repayment clause to the government for the £3.2M that they borrowed, so they’re circa £10M down after the 1st quarter of the season. Given that they already declared losses of £15M, then by my count they’re around £25M in the red before the first trophy of the season has been won.

    I also heard some time back from a good source that they haven’t been paying cash for the players they’ve signed over the past year or so, and the ones that they have, come with huge sell on fees. For example, they didn’t sign Kamara for £50k only, as there’s a hefty sign on to make up the rest which has been rumoured at 50%, and the only reason he recently signed an extended contract, was so they could demand an inflated price and pay Dundee their cut. Juninho that they just signed from Huddersfield was also don’t on the cheap. The thinking behind it is that *the Raijurs have a bigger audience than said clubs, therefore they have a better chance of securing a larger sum, even if that is by claiming g a percentage of the sell on fee. They reportedly paid £7.5M for Kent, but what wasn’t lavished across the back pages was the fact that Liverpool also included a 40% of the sell on fee. This is the sell on fee and not 40% of the profit, like Celtic done with Edouard. So you see, *the Raijurs are soon to be following in the footsteps of the 1872 cheats that went before them. At least Davies & McGregor have got precious and experience of tearing up contracts and running away and will be able to advise the other soon to be unemployed at £brokes.

    The shelves might be empty, but the jelly & ice cream is fully stocked.

  • REBELLIOUS says:

    We’ve been hearing of their financial peril for years now and for me, that day won’t come quickly enough.

    However, those fqrs @the sfa had the foresight to see this might happen and now that the rules have been changed to ease them back into the top flight, well; their returning path has been in place for some time now. These are slippery FQS and I firmly believe that we should’ve buried them when we had the chance, they would’ve merrily danced on our graves if the roles were reversed they 100% would’ve. We’ll live to regret that. Hope I’m wrong, although I’m regretting atm anyway.

    Now, let’s see what happens when they go tits up again, we will never be rid of them,
    NEVER.
    We had our chance and blew it.

  • Justshatered says:

    Problem is the League and SFA already know how bad it is and they will move heaven and earth to ensure they fain that cash next year.
    The real problem, and my real fear, is Celtic also know how bad the problem is.

  • Barry says:

    Book the Hearst now…

  • Patrick Quigley says:

    What about the deal with the SFA and with the blessing of the SPFL that the official will make sure as much as possible that they will collect the CL money at the end of the season have you factored that in?

  • SSMPM says:

    It goes without saying that their situation is dire however, as above, transfers and CL money is not factored in. We need to get our own club in order to stop the CL automatic place guaranteeing massive funds to aid their survival. Qualifying through the rounds, as we know, is no sure thing. If they have to move players on for cash then they’ll still exist but by then Slippy will have slipped away. His future planning is far too important for him to remain with a losing rankers club thus I want nothing more than the double – smash them and Slippy’s career. based on our own level of functioning I have my doubts that we will or can do that but I live in hope. HH

  • Stevie says:

    Don’t be surprised if the celtic board don’t give them a wee dig out.
    Old Firm farce keeps the cash rolling in.

  • Sophie Johnstone says:

    What month is it,every month since 2012 were told this time,and yet were still waiting

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