Rumour mill: Rangers tax case | Fraser Forster

Murray believes the shadow of the tax case forced him into selling to  Craig Whyte who then ruined the club finacially. Picture: TSPLMurray believes the shadow of the tax case forced him into selling to  Craig Whyte who then ruined the club finacially. Picture: TSPL
Murray believes the shadow of the tax case forced him into selling to Craig Whyte who then ruined the club finacially. Picture: TSPL
David Murray’s anger over tax case; Southampton join chase for Forster; Aberdeen eye ‘£100m’ winger; Caldwell doesn’t fear Germans and more in Thursday’s Rumour mill....

David Murray’s anger over tax case

David Murray last night blamed the taxman for Rangers’ liquidation. The former owner made the statement after a judge kicked out HMRC’s appeal in their long running tax case against Rangers. Murray believes the shadow of the case looming over the Ibrox club put off many buyers leaving Murray to take a risk and sell to Craig Whyte who took the club into financial meltdown. Murray released the statement through his business Murray International Holdings, saying: “It is obvious that the much-publicised existence of these proceedings over shadowed Rangers FC for many years and tarnished the external perception of its value. There can be little doubt that despite favourable opinion, potential acquirers were therefore dissuaded from pursuing their interest during a period in which we were marketing the sale of MIH’s shareholding.” Murray then added that he does not believe Rangers would not have been liquidated or put into administration had Whyte then fulfilled his contractual obligations. (Record)

Meanwhile, Rangers supporters group Union of Fans have vowed to gain revenge after the tax man failed to overturn defeat in the £75 million case. A spokesman for the fans group said: “Rangers and its fans have been the victims of a witch-hunt by HMRC followed by a systematic fraud by Craig Whyte and others. We will be liaising with oldco shareholders and all other interested parties to see what civil action can be taken against HMRC and the SFA in particular.” The HMRC are thought to be considering another appeal against the judgement. (Sun)

Southampton join chase for Fraser Forster

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Southampton boss Ronald Koeman will battle it out with Benfica for Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster’ signature by making an £8 million bid. Koeman wants Forster to join his team as part of his £70 miilion squad revamp for the Premiership side. The Dutchman has the money available after the sale of three of the team’s biggest players Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana and Luke Shaw. Koeman is also said to be keen on fellow Dutchman Virigl Van Dijk. (Record)

Aberdeen eye ‘£100m’ winger

Aberdeen are close to securing Wolves winger Zeli Ismail on a season’s loan. The 20-year-old Albania-born player who was once tipped to become the world’s first ‘£100 million’ player, was on loan at Burton Albion last season where he made a big impact and now Wolves are keen to offer him to Aberdeen on loan this season. Six years ago, Ismail, then just 14, was a target for Chelsea and Manchester City who bid £2.5 million for him but they were rejected by Wolves. Chris Evans, Wolves’ academy director at the time tipped the player for the very top saying: “It was clear early on Zeli was a special player. If he continues his progress up to the age of 21 he will be priceless.” (Express)

Caldwell doesn’t fear Germans

Gary Caldwell says Scotland don’t fear the Germans and that the national team are ready to take them on in the qualifier in Dortmund on September 7th. He said: “We have a manager who knows what he’s doing. When the game comes, we will be ready to perform and put on a show against what could be the best team in the world.” (Sun)

News in brief:

• Jonny Hayes says Aberdeen won’t be riled up by Riga in their return leg clash. (Mail)

• West Brom manager Alan Irvine is keen on fellow Scot Alan Hutton an is weighing up a move for the Aston Villa player. (Express)

• Barry Ferguson signs three new players at Clyde, including defender Scott Durie, son of Rangers legend Gordon. Former Livingston midfielder David Sinclair and Montrose playmaker David Gray have also signed on. (Express)