Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Bigotry kept Rangers out of SPL, says Green

Charles Green

Rangers chief executive Charles Green has claimed “bigotry” was one of the reasons behind his club being denied a place in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League.

Green's Sevco consortium purchased the assets and business of Rangers when the club were consigned to liquidation over the summer.

SPL clubs then voted against the newco being admitted to Scottish football's top-flight, before Scottish Football League sides voted in favour of the Glasgow giants playing in the Irn-Bru Third Division, rather than Division One.

Green said last night: “Some of it has been driven by bigotry, some of it's been driven by jealousy and some of it's been driven by all the wrong motives.”

Asked to expand on what he meant by bigotry, Green said: “We've got a position whereby Rangers were thrown out of the league and these clubs are still appealing with fans to buy season tickets.

“What's happened with Rangers, as an outsider looking in, although I am now an insider, is absolutely incredible where it seems to me the whole of Scotland have wanted to kick this giant club while it was down.

“I think justice has been done. The club were fined 10 points, it received a £190,000 fine, it was then put out the SPL, it was then put down to the Third Division, it has had to pay all the Scottish club debts, which wouldn't normally happen for a newco to be obliged to pay oldco's debts.

“We're also now paying European debts and there is still a potential cloud hanging over the club from the SPL over EBT issues.

“I had meetings last week with some UEFA officials who say this is unprecedented in Europe.”

Meanwhile, Ally McCoist insists he will continue to chase the best possible players for Rangers despite their status as an Irn-Bru Third Division club — with Northern Ireland international Dean Shiels among them.

With a 12-month transfer embargo set to come into effect on September 1 — and several of his first team regulars having already refused to transfer their contracts to the newco — McCoist faces a race against time to build a squad.

“I believe you get the best you can. The players we are attempting to target are players that our fans deserve to see. It's getting the blend right as well,” says McCoist.

On Shiels he said: "It's not over the line yet, but there is certainly a deal to be done there."