The Rumour Mill: Thursday’s news and gossip

Former Rangers director Paul Murray. Picture: SNS
Former Rangers director Paul Murray. Picture: SNS
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In today’s Rumour Mill: Paul Murray claims Rangers could be owed tens of millions in damages; Alex Salmond ‘backs’ Lothar Matthaus for Scotland; Craig Whyte slams HMRC incompetence and claims taxman tried to make example of club; Celtic eye January swoop for Polish winger, plus the rest of today’s transfer news and gossip

Rangers could be owed millions in damages by HMRC, says Paul Murray

Former Rangers director Paul Murray has claimed that Rangers could be owed tens of millions of pounds in damages following a phantom tax bill that forced the liquidation of the oldco. Murray also called for a probe to be launched into the circumstances surrounding the events that forced Rangers to go to the wall.

“What we are dealing with here is the destruction of a 140-year-old Scottish institution. That in itself warrants an investigation of some sort.

“The fact that the circumstances surrounding this case remain very complex and unclear further leads to a need for answers as to how and why it was allowed to happen.

“Currently, the legal custodians of ‘oldco’ are BDO. As the custodians, they are morally and legally obliged to get to the bottom of what went on. It is their responsibility to examine the chain of events that led to Rangers’ demise and the actions of those people who were involved in it.

“On the back of that they can potentially pursue damages against any parties who have disadvantaged the club. We could be talking here, at a conservative estimate, of tens of millions of pounds.”

Alex Salmond ‘backs Lothar Matthaus for Scotland job’

First Minister Alex Salmond weighed in to the debate over the Scotland vacancy by ‘backing’ Germany legend Lothar Matthaus, according to the Daily Mail. Salmond was speaking to German media as he met the president of Lower Saxony, David McAllister, in Hanover.

“We Scots have all admired Lothiar Matthaus a great deal as a player,” said Salmond. “The Scotland team needs a strong manager and I could easily imagine Matthaus doing well in the job. The decision has not yet been made and he is just one of a number of candidates.”

The First Minister, however, added that it was not his job to appoint a successor to Craig Levein. (Daily Express)

Craig Whyte: ‘Incompetent HMRC sought to make example of Rangers’

Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte claims that HMRC were more interested in making an example out of the club than doing a deal which may have saved the club from liquidation. Whyte, who took over the club in 2011 only to relinquish control earlier this year, added that the need to create a new Rangers exposed HMRC’s “incompetence”.

“As soon as I took over, I approached them with a payment package that assumed we would lose the big tax case. But it was like they were determined to put the club down and make an example of us.

“The fact that there is now a newco Rnagers is down to their [HMRC] incompetence.” (Daily Express)

Celtic eye Polish winger Wszolek

Celtic are weighing up a Jauary move for Polish winger Pawel Wszolek. The 20-year-old Polonia midfielder’s form has turned the heads of several clubs across the continent. Wszolek has already made two senior appearances for the national team, but his club insist that the player, who has two years remaining on his contract, is not for sale. (The Sun)

Rangers fans’ chief joins calls for halt to probe

John Macmillan, the secretary for the Rangers Supporters Clubs, has joined calls for the SPL to halt a probe into the club’s alleged use of dual contracts to pay players. Former Rangers chairman Alastair Johnston and chief executive Charles Green have already urged the SPL to scrap the investigation.

“I certainly would like to see it scrapped,” Macmillan said. “But if they do want to go ahead you can be assured that we, as Rangers supporters, will back the club the whole way to fight this case with the SPL.”

City, United and Ajax line up bid for Rangers youth

Rangers goalkeeper Robby McCrorie is the subject of a potential bid from three top clubs, including Manchester City and Manchester United. The 14-year-old goalkeeper is also attracting interest from Dutch side Ajax. Rangers chiefs have involved the young goalkeeper in first team training already this season. (Sun)