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SBD Global/July 18, 2012/Franchises
As Rangers' Blackout Fears Emerge, SPL Chief Continues Talks With Sky
Published July 18, 2012
NO GUARANTEES: In London, Ewing Grahame noted that when asked about whether a deal with Sky was in place, Doncaster replied: "It is what it is. I've been as clear as I can. I can't be any clearer." He also refused to make any guarantees that Sky would be showing Scottish football next season. Doncaster: "You'll write whatever you need to write, but I've been as clear as I can be." Back in March, Doncaster tellingly said that a "deal with Sky hinged on both Old Firm clubs being in the SPL." He said, "The current contract, which comes to an end this season, says Rangers and Celtic must play each other four times a season. That’s in line with most of our large contracts -- our title sponsors are the same" (TELEGRAPH, 7/17). In Edinburgh, Alan Pattulo reported that one sticking point remains the "granting of an SFA-approved licence to Rangers newco" in order for them to take their position in the Third Division. Rangers CEO Charles Green will meet with the SFA to "sort out a number of issues" with the Scottish game's governing body. One of the issues being the transfer embargo and £100,000 ($156,500) fine imposed on Rangers for bringing "the game into disrepute" (SCOTSMAN, 7/17).
SETTLING DEBTS: The HERALD SCOTLAND reported that Green is "travelling to Switzerland in a bid to negotiate with UEFA a settlement" to repay the £3M ($4.7M) of debts owed to European clubs. Green has revealed that he will "travel to Athens to secure a friendly against Olympiacos" at Ibrox before going to meet with UEFA. Green: "Part of the conditions for the newco to meet to satisfy SFA membership is that there are certain old club debts to European clubs. It is not inconsiderable, it is about £3M ($4.7M) that has been accumulated as part of the historical baggage." Green also thinks that there has been a "change in attitude from the fans towards him and revealed they can ultimately own up to 50% of the club." He said, "I am trying to do a job that rescues Rangers for the fans and for the people who own this club. They can own up to 50% of this and again if fans choose not to buy shares then that is their right. The opportunity is there, we will have fulfilled our promise to fans and that is the next step" (HERALD SCOTLAND, 7/17).