Rangers are the latest team to emerge with a major cash crisis this week with something in the region of £25-£3o million owing. The majority would appear to be owed to Lloyds banking group although it is still unclear what the breakdown of the debt is.
The club and bank have both denied that there is a chance the Ger’s could go into administration, but if I where a fan I wouldn’t be convinced or reassured by their respective comments.
The club are looking for new backers to come in and ‘invest’ some funds to enable them to get the bank off their backs. In short they haven’t got the money and need someone with bags of money to waste to bail them out.
Sir David Murray looks to have stopped putting money in and he has now stepped down as chairman.
There appears to be mixed views among the Rangers fans about Murray though, it looks like most acknowledge his commitment to the club over the 20 years that he has been involved. But there appears to be an undercurrent of disenchanted supporters who view him as the problem to Rangers debts.
Murray may not be the chairman any more but he is still the 90% owner of Rangers shares and his reluctance to put his hand in his pocket to help out with the debts when he was the man who resided over accumilating them seems to be irritating some Ibrox fans.
With a representative of the Lloyds banking group now on the Rangers board it is debatable as to who is really running the club. After no new (permanent) signings during the summer transfer window it looks like the only transfer activity during January will be players leaving the club.
Manager Walter Smith would appear to have had enough as well if his comments over the weekend are to be taken seriously. When his contract runs out in January if Lloyds are running the club will they want to offer him a new one? Even if they do offer him a contract and his squad has been decimated would he want to sign it anyway?
Rangers are also struggling on the pitch and the fans were far from happy with last weeks 4-1 home thrashing in the Champions League to unknown FC Unirea Urziceni. With Celtic also struggling under new boss Tony Mowbray the chance is there for Rangers to successfully defend their SPL title this year, it would appear to depend on what happens over the next couple of months and during the January transfer window though.
Onto the football betting, and with online bookmakers, Rangers are 7/4 with BetVictor to win this years SPL, while Celtic are favourites and can be backed at 8/13 with Stan James (a £10 Stan James Free Bet is available to new customers).
Hibernian are outsiders at 100/1 with Paddy Power and Bet365.