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SBD Global/March 5, 2013/Franchises

Rangers CEO Green Set To Launch Legal Campaign To Get Rangers Into English Football

Scottish Third Division club Rangers are "preparing to launch a legal campaign to support its long-held desire to be allowed to compete in the English football," according to Roger Blitz of the FINANCIAL TIMES. Rangers CEO Charles Green said that he was "determined" to put the issue on the agenda, this time "with the threat of court action to reinforce the club's claim." Green said that resistance to the idea is "anti-competitive." He said that "he intended to put recommendations to the Rangers board," supported by opinions from three law firms, that to deny Rangers access to English football "would be in breach of European competition law" (FINANCIAL TIMES, 3/4). The SCOTSMAN reported Green believes that the Old Firm sides "would ideally play in England, with their junior sides contesting the league in Scotland." Green: "The parents would play in a different league, I believe that would be England." He cited Swansea City and Cardiff City as evidence that teams from outside England could play in the Barclays Premier League, "which is Green’s ultimate goal for Rangers" (SCOTSMAN, 3/4).

ALTERNATIVE ROUTE: REUTERS' Keith Weir reported Green added that the alternative for Rangers "would be a place in a cross-border European league." The idea of Glasgow's "Old Firm" clubs playing in England has been around "for a number of years and has been rejected in the past by Premier League clubs." Although bringing big crowds, it would mean a couple of English teams "risked being squeezed out of the lucrative top flight." Rangers still draw crowds of 45,000. Green added that in the short-term, a planned restructuring of Scottish football should give Rangers "a quick route back towards the top of the Scottish game" (REUTERS, 3/4).
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