All the latest news from Ibrox ahead of Rangers’ long-awaited agm; Georgios Samaras a Lazio target as Celtic identify Heerenveen’s Alfred Finnbogason as potential replacement; Craig Whyte compared to Dickens character, plus all the latest football news and gossip
Rangers agm: Give peace a chance, King urges
Former Ibrox director and investor Dave King has urged the current regime to offer an “olive branch” to supporters by inviting rival Paul Murray on to the board.
Businessman Jim McColl – a backer of the “requisitioners” who had hoped to oust the current board but now look doomed to defeat today – also believes Murray and King would be good additions to the board.
Responding to reports that the reigning board – led by chairman David Somers – had secured enough votes to retain their roles, King said: “I would hope that they will reach out a little bit and invite Paul Murray on to the board.” (Scotsman)
MORE FROM THE RANGERS AGM
Boycott fans will know how I felt leaving Rangers - Naismith
Everton striker Steven Naismith has compared his decision to leave Rangers last year to the plight current fans may face if they decide to boycott Rangers in protest at a lack of transparency at board level.
Naismith, who left in the summer of 2012, was heavily criticised by fans for a perceived lack of loyalty after leaving Ibrox. But Naismith, a boyhood Rangers fan, says fans may be confronting a similar dilemma as several fans groups have indicated that they may boycott Rangers games and merchandise.
“Some fans you speak to, they understand how big a decision it was. Others don’t and probably never will - until they’re in that situation.”
He added: For fans who have been going for years and years, they’ve got to make a big decision and it is hard.” (Daily Record)
Rangers rebels have Plan B, says Malcolm Murray
Former Rangers chairman Malcolm Murray has indicated today’s agm may not spell the end of the rebel group’s bid to take control at Ibrox. Despite claims that the current board has already secured proxy votes that would see the rebel group’s bid to overthrow them fail, Murray has urged fans to arrive at the agm and make themselves heard. On the group’s fallback option, he said: “It depennds what the other shareholders want to do, but we certainly won’t be releasing our Plan B like we did last time.” (Daily Express)
Jim McColl wants Brian Stockbridge out
Fresh calls for Rangers finance director Brian Stockbridge to be ousted from the board have been made by Jim McColl. The businessman, part of the rebel group seeking to overthrow the current regime, said Stockbridge’s position was untenable after overseeing major losses at the club. He has also called for Paul Murray and Dave King to be added to the board. (Daily Express)
Dave King may reinvest in Rangers
Dave King has said he is prepared to open talks with the victors of today’s Rangers agm with a view to investing in the club. King has spoken to both sides ahead of the agm, and will reopen talks with whoever emerges from the agm in charge at Ibrox. “In a fairly short period of time, I will be in a position of knowing who will be at the helm going forward. After that we will be able to have those conversations.” (Daily Express)
Lazio poised for Georgios Samaras swoop
Celtic striker Georgios Samaras is a target for Italian club Lazio, the Italian side confirmed. The Greek international has six months left on his current deal, and with talks reportedly stalled over Celtic’s demand that Samaras take a pay cut to extend his deal, Lazio could grab Samaras as soon as next month.
Lazio sporting director Igli Tare said: “Samaras is one I like. We were interested in him four years go.”
Meanwhile, Neil Lennon has already been scouring the continent for a replacement, with Heerenveen striker Alfred Finnbogason his latest target. The Celtic manager has been monitoring the Icelandic striker, who has scored 40 goals in 47 games since last year. (The Sun, Daily Express)
Judge compares Craig Whyte to Dickens character
Former Glasgow Rangers football club owner Craig Whyte lost the latest round of a High Court fight with a ticket-buying firm yesterday and was likened to a character in a Charles Dickens novel.Craig Whyte appealed after being ordered to pay more than £17million to Ticketus earlier this year.
Ticketus said Mr Whyte fraudulently or negligently made representations which induced the company to enter into agreements related to the sale or purchase of Rangers season tickets, and claimed damages.
“It was argued that the case should go to trial because of its complexity and financial value and because Mr Whyte is disadvantaged in not having the relevant documents or legal resources,” said Judge Halpern.
“In my judgment [it] was right to reject these arguments, which I regard as pure Micawberism.” (Scotsman)