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Rangers AGM: ‘Back McCoist’ call from fans’ group

Rangers manager Ally McCoist leads training. Picture: SNS

Rangers manager Ally McCoist leads training. Picture: SNS

A MAJOR Rangers fans group has called on the rest of the Ibrox board to echo Graham Wallace’s support for boss Ally McCoist.

Join Tom English on Wednesday from noon UK time for a live webchat ahead of the Rangers AGM

The first-team manager has gifted his vote at Thursday’s Annual General Meeting to the Calderwood Rangers Supporters Club in his home town of East Kilbride.

The club’s all-time record scorer owns one million shares - giving him a stake of just less than two per cent.

But he has now handed the voting rights to the supporters group, who are set to cast the ballot in favour of boardroom change.

The club’s five current PLC directors - Wallace, chairman David Somers, James Easdale, Norman Crighton and the under-fire finance director Brian Stockbridge - all face a re-election vote at the AGM.

‘Back McCoist’ call

Chief executive Wallace has assured McCoist that he will not pay a heavy price following his proxy move, even though it threatens the survival of the current regime.

But Gordon Dinnie, chairman of the Rangers Supporters Trust, said his solitary pledge was not enough.

“It is excellent news that Wallace is backing the manager,” said the fans chief in a statement. “However we have seen the situation of one board member being outvoted in all major decisions twice before.

“Our members’ AGM voting poll shows a complete lack of trust in the current board besides Wallace. We would love to hear the remaining members of the current board say they are 100 per cent behind our manager at Thursday’s AGM.”

Wallace was quoted by several newspapers on Tuesday morning offering his support to McCoist, who has led the club to the top of League One with 15 straight wins.

He said: “I have told [Ally] that he has that support - that unanimous support from the existing board.

“It’s an interesting one. If you look at Alistair’s position, he was here as a player for 15 years. He has been here as coach and manager for nearly seven years. The one consistent thing through all those years has been the support of the fans.

“His desire is to do the best thing for the club. And I think the rationale in his proxy going to his local supporters group is that if anyone has the best interests of the club at heart, that supporters group does.

‘I have no issue with him doing that. I knew that was what he was going to do because we had talked about it in recent days. I think it goes to demonstrate the significance of the supporter base and what they provide.”

‘No sell-off’

Tuesday’s reports also quoted Wallace vowing to ensure the ownership of Ibrox would be retained by the club - but Dinnie claims the strength of his assurance was not matched by football club chairman Sandy Easdale - who holds 26.62 per cent of the club’s voting rights - when he spoke out last week.

Now he wants the current PLC board to give a categorical promise that the stadium will not be sold off - a statement which has already been made by the four “requisitioners” - Paul Murray, Malcolm Murray, Scott Murdoch and Alex Wilson - who will also bid to win directorships on Thursday.

Dinnie said: “Wallace was insistent a sale and leaseback of Ibrox was not an option yet Sandy Easdale was quoted as saying ‘at this present moment’ it is not an option. The four nominees have promised to ‘ring-fence Ibrox’ and again we would ask the current board members to do similar on Thursday.”

The AGM will be staged at Ibrox at 10.30am but the club issued a statement on Tuesday morning urging stakeholders to arrive by no later than 9.30am.

And Dinnie urged everyone eligible to make their vote count.

“Ally McCoist giving his proxy to supporters is excellent news as we as the supporters trust believe fans need an influential voice,” he said. “It’s imperative all fans who have a vote in Thursday’s AGM use it, whether it’s a proxy by the current manager or the fan in the street who owns a handful of shares.”

 

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