Rangers chairman Dave King held a press conference on Monday, during which he addressed a number of issues relating to shares, transfer budgets and new manager Steven Gerrard. Here is what we learned...
There’s going to be another share issue...
There had been whispers about a significant announcement prior to the briefing and sure enough, Dave King revealed that there were plans for another share issue.
The Rangers chairman is hopeful of raising somewhere in the region of £6 million.
He said today at the press conference: “We haven’t decided how much money will be available but at the moment I am thinking about £6 million new cash in the balance converted to loans.”
... but no plans for external investment at the moment
Following the departure of directors Paul Murray and Barry Scott, the rumour mill went into overdrive amid suggestions new investors were being lined up.
However, King dismissed those reports, adding: “We are not talking to anyone new, who is not there already. There is nothing external other than existing shareholders and investors.”
Steven Gerrard’s transfer kitty is TBA
With Steven Gerrard due to take up his role as Rangers manager in June, there has been a lot of talk about the budget he’ll get for transfers. Pundit and former Celtic midfielder Kris Commons reckons the ex-Liverpool captain will need about £70 million to compete with his former club, but anyone hoping for King to reveal details were left sorely disappointed.
“We don’t put figures on that because we can’t,” King said. “We have given a commitment that we will continue to invest in the squad and we will provide additional net funds to Steven.
“He will sit down with [Director of Football] Mark Allen, and determine how much he needs.”
King’s Takeover Panel tussle ‘has nothing to do with the club’
King also addressed his ongoing battle with the Takeover Panel. Last week, he was confirmed to be in breach of takeover rules after failing to deposit around £11 million in a UK bank account ahead of the deadline for his mandatory bid.
He said: “About four weeks ago now, I agreed with the takeover panel that, while I wouldn’t make a formal offer, one of my trust companies would.
“The takeover panel would accept the offer as being from me personally, as they know that I would never make an offer. They accepted that, they asked for proof of funds which we gave them.
“They asked for the funds to be ringfenced in a separate account, to make sure the funds could only be used for the purpose of the shares.
“The panel wanted the funds relocated to the UK. I was happy to do that, but would have to open a UK bank account, which I agreed to do.
“They didn’t grant an extension, which I needed to get through the various processes in time to meet the deadline.”
King stressed: “This is nothing to do with the football club, it makes no difference to the football club. It has nothing to do with the team and with funding.”
• READ MORE - Nine Rangers players Steven Gerrard should keep
David Murray isn’t coming back
Dave King addressed rumours that former Gers owner Sir David Murray could make a return, by investing in Rangers.
King insisted that a Murray comeback was “more than unlikely,” adding: “Zero per cent chance of that happening would be a bit on the high side.”
Not selling Morelos was Murty’s call
King revealed it was entirely Graeme Murty’s decision to turn down a reported £10 million offer for striker Alfredo Morelos from Chinese Super League club Beijing Renhe earlier this year.
The Ibrox chairman revealed: “The manager made a decision not to sell [Morelos]. He knew we could have sold the player but Graeme knew if Morelos went out he couldn’t bring another player in.
“Graeme said ‘I would rather have the player, if you’re not putting me under pressure to get the money I would rather keep the player’ and we said there’s no pressure, you make a football decision.”
Rangers are targeting one league title
King believes Steven Gerrard can turn the balance of power in Scottish football back in Rangers’ favour by stemming the steady flow of Champions League money into Celtic’s bank account.
The Ibrox chairman reckons just one league title win for the Ibrox club can make Celtic’s current domestic dominance fall like “a pack of cards”.
He said: “We appoint a manager who can win games and we take one league away from Celtic. We only need one. We don’t need two or three. We need one. Once we take one away, it’s a pack of cards.”