Scots clubs show ‘signs of distress’

A STUDY by corporate recovery specialists Begbies Traynor has revealed a picture of poor financial health in Scottish football, which threatens to extend well beyond the current situation at Rangers.

The Red Flag Alert survey, which monitors business distress levels, has found that of the 32 clubs currently playing in the SPL, First and Second Divisions, four – including troubled Rangers – are recorded as displaying signs of corporate distress that indicate poor financial health.

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The survey was anonymous, and the other clubs can’t be named, but data showed that one in eight (12.5 per cent) of the clubs are showing signs of distress compared to an average of less than 1 per cent of all businesses across the UK.

Commenting on the survey’s findings, Ken Pattullo, group managing partner in Scotland for Begbies Traynor, said: “The alarmingly high level of financial distress levels among professional clubs could be a sign of more casualties to follow Rangers.

“In England, the football creditors’ rule means that football debts, which include wages and transfer fees to other clubs, provide a safety net for football clubs owed money by a club that goes into administration. In Scotland there is no such safety net for any of the clubs owed money by Rangers, or other clubs affected by any future football club administrations.”