14/02/2012 Newsnight Scotland


Similar Content

Browse content similar to 14/02/2012. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!



Tonight on Newsnight Scotland: the latest on the problems facing


Rangers Football Club. As the historic organisation goes into


administration, we'll ask if this is the end, or possibly a new


beginning for the club. And what does it mean for the rest of


Scottish football? Also tonight, we visit north west England - do they


relish the prospect of an independent Scotland on their


doorstep? Good evening. Another day, another spectacular series of


events in the 140 year history of Rangers football club. This evening


the club is formally in adminstration, and ten league


points further away from the top of the SPL. There have arguments


inside and outside courtrooms, and tears, literally, in the street


outside Ibrox. But there have also been promises that this process


will result in a stronger, fitter football business. Catriona Renton


has been following the events of a very complicated day. I should warn


you her report contains some flash The end of a long day, as manager


Ally McCoist leaves the building. And this was the reaction of the


fans to their club going into administration. There is such


history to the club, there are families that come here together.


am gutted for every single Rangers fan. What can you do? It has


happened. We need to move on, now. 140 years of history. Just start


again, now it. People across the world and the country will be


watching this with bated breath. People have made bad decisions.


is a bad day for the whole of Scottish football because it will


go through the old Scottish football. The study was dramatic


enough, when Owen, Craig Whyte, said he intended to put Rangers


into administration, to avoid the uncertainty of its tax problems,


hanging over into next season. That gave it up to 10 days of protection


from action by creditors. But, this morning, the taxman up the pace,


and the clock was ticking. Just after 12 noon, HMRC asked the Court


of Session to put Rangers into administration. Then there was


legal argument over Rangers appointing an administrator. Then,


Rangers QC, Roddy Dunlop, said there had been an outbreak of


common sense and that Rangers could appoint an administrator by half-


past three. At half-past Two he HMRC asked for their petition to be


dismissed and Rangers said they would cover the legal costs.


Rangers then appointed administrators, Duff and Phelps. A


monster other things, administration means Rangers lose


10 points immediately in the SPL. Now remember 10 points, the League


is gone and that is it, the big house must stay open! That is the


bottom line as lavish and Mark some of these boys have taken shuts off


their work, some of them have park money to see Rangers and that is


the thanks they get for it. could they not prolong this to the


end of the season? He is four points behind in the championship


race, pulling the wool over our eyes when we had a chance of


winning the league! Strathclyde police said they wanted to make


administrators to ensure that policing costs for future games


would be met. For more on us so David Murray said words cannot


express how disappointed he was. Then the administrator spoke to the


media. We have a statutory duty to act and the best interests of


creditors and we will pursue that function diligently. We recognise


that the great history of this club means a great deal to people


throughout the world. Today is a sad day for Windows and its fans


but the administration will bring to an end the uncertainty that has


been hanging over the club. The administration period, whilst


difficult for all involved, will give stability to the club, in


order for the club to move forward. I can assure all Rangers supporters


that all aspects of administration will be carried out with the


interests of the club, firmly in mind. As a first step, the


administration team will ensure that Saturday's match at Ibrox will


proceed as planned, and all other routine club business will continue.


This evening, Ally McCoist asked everyone at the club, and fans, not


to lose heart. There are people here who are under I -- undeniably


concerned about their jobs and welfare. We fully appreciate that.


Everyone is of the same opinion, that we must rally together, the


work force, the fans and the players, and take this great club


forward. Maybe once the dust has settled, Rangers fans will feel


differently about the day's manoeuvres. But for now, many fans


that we spoke to were angry, frustrated and fearful for the club


of whose 140 year history they have been so proud. I'm joined now from


Edinburgh for a second night by Stephen Morrow, expert in football


finance, and here in Glasgow by the Daily Record's Jim Traynor. Jim


Traynor, the big new thing that we know today is that, actually the


reason the taxman went to court this morning had nothing to do with


this tribunal they have been talking about four weeks. It would


appear, on the face of it, that Rangers have not been paying the


tax or the VAT that they owe over the past few weeks. HMRC are saying


that they are owed �9 million. This has been spoken about for a long


time, four months in fact, that this might well be the truth, but,


until now it could not be written about or broadcast, but the taxman


as they made it clear, that Rangers have not been paying their dues.


And that is why the taxman is concerned, and rightly so. It is


almost inconceivable that you can run a club of that size, a business


of that size, so much in the public domain, and not paying taxes. It is


unforgivable. I hope that Craig Whyte was watching, particularly


those fans. If there is any humanity there, any spark of


understanding what this club means to those people, I do not think


that he will sleep tonight. I imagine he probably will, because I


don't think he fully understands just what he has done to so many


people. Stephen Morrow, what should be read into the fact that the tax


authorities went to court today, rather than allowing Rangers to do


what they said they wanted to do, yesterday? We read into it the fact


that there was information that had not been put into the public domain.


Yesterday Rangers put into the public domain information about the


big tax case. But HMRC have said that there is much more to the


story, and there is other things going on, too. They are reclaiming


part of the story, saying that we put some of this into the public


domain, because it is not currently there. I think, Steven, we have to


focus, and that is what the fat -- the tax people did today. This


nonsense that Craig Whyte has talked about, about the �9 million


tax bill with penalties, it is fantasy. It will not be more than


48 million. That is huge enough. But the chances are that Rangers


might not have to pay that, there might be �12 million penalties, for


instance, but this nonsense about it being as much as �75 million,


that is a red herring. There is a view that, despite the


understandable upset and anger of Rangers fans, that the current


situation may be where Craig Whyte would rather like to be. You could


look at it and make a strong argument, from the beginning, to


say that this is where this was always going to end up, in


administration, and I still think that liquidation is a very real


threat, with the assets of the club being bought by someone, perhaps


Craig Whyte, and you have a Rangers? What is to stop one of his


companies or somebody else offering the administrator money for Ibrox,


for Moray Park, for the Albany car- park? You do not have to go through


shareholders now, especially when it is liquidation, and these assets


could be sold off. The administrator said that his


priority is to look after predators. The main creditor is Craig Whyte so


he has to look after him. This process could lead to stronger,


fitter, better Rangers. It could lead to a much weaker Rangers, and


a club, after 140 years, that is damaged beyond repair. I want to


stick on this point, that it may be in the interests of Craig Whyte to


go into liquidation if he buys of some of the assessed. What I do not


understand is that, if it is the case that he HMRC want to play


hardball, not just on Rangers, but to get tough on tax avoidance by


football clubs the length and breadth of Britain, if they allow


Rangers to go into liquidation, how do the proceeds? Because they would


have lost all the money. There is a political case been made that they


have to be seen to be being tough on football clubs. The other thing


they are concerned about is there for other obligations of the tax


authorities. It is not a case of trying to get money back, it is


also about... Because it appears that Rangers have not been paying


the current tax, they might want to intervene, now, just to stop that


bill from running any higher? is a perfectly sensible obligation,


to try to work in the public interest. They also know that they


are not paying tax as they :, and that is why they might have


intervened. -- as they grew along. It is in the public interest and


the Government's interest, in terms of the Exchequer. If you were them,


it is difficult to see an outcome from administration or liquidation.


It is easy to see, in both cases, how Craig Whyte could still emerge


as the owner of Rangers, perhaps a week in Rangers, but it is


difficult to see how HMRC emerges, saying, where the white knight


coming in on behalf of the taxpayers, we're getting the


taxpayer's money back. HMRC could get almost nothing promise and that


to be the case whether Rangers is in administration or goes out of


business altogether. It is living beyond his means and does not have


the funds available to meet these debts. There is �9 million which he


HMRC say is due to them. What does that mean? We have as the �24.4


million money to Ticketus come from? Fans will be paying for this


for the next four seasons. If that money is still there, Craig Whyte


could say to the Inland Revenue, there is some money, could you


settle the tax bill with that? But it might well be their own money


that he is offering, because, where is this �9 million? What has he


Why do you suggest that should - even should Craig Whyte emerge -


and we should make clear, presumably at this point if it goes


into liquidation or even administration, it would be open to


someone else, perhaps with more money than sense to step in and say,


no, I'll outbid Craig Whyte and take over the assets of Rangers


because I love the club and... administration, it is open to other


predators, but it's in administration. Why would anyone


offer money to take it? Because the big tax bill is still looming. I


mean, that would be folly. You can come out of an administration, but


there is no ruling on the big tax case, so if you buy it now, you


have that liability. So in that sense, if someone else is going to


come in, the club would have to be in liquidation, is that right?


think what's most likely to happen is when it goes into liquidation


because at that point you have a clear picture of what you're


actually buying. That's a more likely outcome. It'ss feasible


outcome, isn't it? You might say it doesn't make sense financially, but


you could they about people who have been take over football clubs


across the UK, couldn't you? Absolutely. The one thing we can


say with some certainty is someone will come along and reform this


club in some shape or form at the end of this process. I think it


won't disappear, but it will be markedly different organisation...


You might not own your assets. was going to ask you that because


you said about three or four minutes ago that you thought if


this scenario comes to past pass, whether it's Craig Whyte or not,


that owns the assets of what would be a new Rangers that it might be a


significantly weaker club than it has been historically for some


considerable time. Why do you think that? I mean, if you have to - if


you're weakened significantly through this process, whether it


remains in administration or becomes worse in its liquidation,


if you're looking to the extent that it will take you years the


recover but you don't own your assets, Ibrox, Murray Park or even


the car park, you'll have to rent those. That'll cost you money.


Therefore, you might not become strong enough again to compete


because you're always paying massive amounts in rent every year


to someone else who owns the ground. Right. You could imagine a Rangers,


what? What are you suggesting? A kind of mid-table team for awhile?


Yeah, I think the worst case scenario is they emerge from this


process or liquidation, and they may be - maybe one or two or all


their assets have been sold off. I am not saying that's what Craig


Whyte is planning, but it's a possibility. Someone else might buy


them. Where would Rangers be then? Obviously one big factor in that is


players. I am intrigued by a technical aspect of this. As I


understand it, if the club is in administration or liquidation,


players could be sold off to get money to pay creditors, but if


you're one of the Rangers' players tonight, do Rangers have to honour


your contract in administration? I understand in England, there was


some sort of test case about this. It was ruled that compensation in


player contract came ahead of secure creditors. That's right.


There are different rules south of the border than north - the


football creditors' rule that exists that protects all football


debt that doesn't apply in Scotland. There is still an expectation that


the players' contracts will be honoured if at all possible.


Nevertheless, it still gives the administrator the opportunity to


try to sell players if that is going to help to meet the


obligation... But do they have to honour the players' wages laid down


in those contracts? That is the given. It's expected to honour


those players' wages if possible. That then comes back to the extent


if that is feasible given that it's an organisation that is no longer


to actually exist as it's currently structured.


We have to leave it there. Thank you very much indeed.


$$NEWLINEnow the latest in our series of films in which our


reporter Ian Hamilton has been travelling to find out what the


English think about Scottish independence. So far he's been to


Cornwall and Corby. Tonight we hear from a part of England which was


part of the Kingdom of Scotland until about 800 years ago, West


Cumbria, and in particular the town of Whitehaven. Given that they are


so near the border and with geography so similar to Scotland,


how do they see the prospect of Freezing February fog rose across


Whitehaven's ancient harbour. It's here 250 years ago where they built


impressive oak ships, where the tine and Cumbrian were at the


centre of adventure and change. Pirates and sailors brought spices


and rum from the Caribbean. Whitehaven itself has been a


trading port until Glasgow established itself. Whitehaven was


the provider of a lot of goods. They're using the spirits of the


past to attract tourists to revive the local economy. I don't think


there will be a negative impact. I don't think that we would feel any


particular loss at our neighbours declaring independence. In fact


there, might be one positive thing that might arise from it is there


is quite a bit of funding to come out of Europe for projects that we


can cooperate across international boundaries, and we would definitely


have one with Scotland, and this could benefit one of the few


industries that we've got in joint areas, and that is fishing.


Consequently it could be a net gain for this area. While I have been


here in Cumbria some have said to me that independence in Scotland


could be good for them in this corner of England because it could


give them access to European money and cash from London.


From the high seas to the High Street, the mood music is that


they're not that concerned about what the neighbours are up to.


# I'm all out of faith # This is how I feel #


Quite a few people I have spoken to and a few in the chamber of traid,


they quite welcome it because they think we may just get more visitors


to this town, and more important, more money coming in through the


Government. # No regrets now


# They only hurt # I think I read somewhere that


Scotland receive 34 billion from the English Government. If it goes


independent, Scotland, that means hopefully the Government is saving


money, and Cumbria is the smallest receiver of money from Government


of the counties in England, so hopefully we may get more


Government money to help us. It's hard to believe that these towns in


the north-west corner of England were once at the heart of Britain's


maritime or industrial revolution. Ship building and mining have gone.


What is left is nostalgia. Thomas Henry as Mayor was the founder of


the White Star Line. For this reason we like to say that the


Mersey port is the route of the Titanic's story. Scotland, if


that's what they want to do, they should go for it. I mean, we feel


even in this part of England that we're often forgotten about by


London and Parliament, and I can imagine how the people of Scotland


would feel even more so. I don't think that it would affect us


enormously because I don't see border posts being set up and the


wall being manned again or the forts that used to litter this area.


2,000 years ago the Romans built a fort, and Hadrian installed a wall


- even to keep us in or keep us out. For more than a thousand years this


area of Cumbria was a part of Scotland. At one time it was. Up


until the 12th century, it was part of Scotland anyway, so here was


more Scottish than anywhere else. Here, the mood swings from apathy


to enthusiasm for Scottish independence - not about what it


can do for us but what opportunities it can present for


them. So could any potential change upset the tranquility between north


Download Subtitles