When Things Don't Add Up.
We are now one third of the way through the transfer window and it is starting to look like it may have caught us by surprise,despite it happening at the same time each year. The past ten days have seen the lads complete their warm weather training break but with no additions to an already stretched squad. The only movement we have seen is the transfers of Lewis Morgan and Scott Sinclair,neither of whom were in the manager’s plans. That is his decision to make,even if I think he got one of them wrong. The decision to sell them is the only sign we have seen that Peter Lawwell hasn’t gone on holiday,apart from a waffling statement the other day about Ryan Christie’s ban.
With the huns breathing down our neck,I think it’s fair to say that strengthening in certain areas should be a priority-yet there has been little sign of activity on that front. Bringing in late additions will be just that-late! If we sign a player on the 31st of January,it is unlikely he will be ready for at least two weeks.
We have five league games to play before then,and four of them are away from home!
It gets worse,too. Our only reported target is Andraz Sporar. Apparently,we opened negotiations with his club,who were happy with how things went and asked us to table a formal bid. We never did. Now,we all know that football is a very small world,and that people within the game talk. If Lawwell gets a reputation as a timewaster,his chances of getting anyone to answer his calls are nil. That might suit him,of course-after all,he has his close relationship with Manchester City and with the Israeli agent,Dudu Duhan. But that leaves us with a very small pool of talent to choose from.
Much as Mahe and I enjoy writing these articles,I freely confess that Armando Ianucci did a much better job of adapting Charles Dicken’s classic,A Christmas Carol,than I did.
To be honest,there were some suggestions that I was overly harsh on Lawwell at the time,which I countered by pointing out that the last few paragraphs offered the hope of a happy ending. After all,it isn’t Bleak House! I pointed out that his legacy is in his own hands,and he will be judged by us on that. Events since would suggest that there is more chance of Vivian from The Young Ones changing his underwear than of Lawwell changing course. Having lost our best manager since Jock Stein,he appointed Neil Lennon as interim manager,but without allowing him to bring his own back-up team. No offence to Damian or John,but they do not seem capable of pointing out the tactical adjustments that are sometimes necessary during games. And I’m not sure Neil would listen either. But he would have listened to Johann Mjallby or Gary Parker,the men who were there for him in the past.
So why the lack of activity in signing fresh legs? Well,I’d say that the obvious reason is that Lawwell has done a cost/benefit analysis on various players and decided that the cost outweighs the benefits each time. Echoes,of course,of 2009 when we blew a good lead at New Year for pretty much the same reason. It also cost us our manager at the time,with a scunnert Gordon Strachan departing without a job to go to. Three times in a row the huns would win the league after this fiasco,despite the fact that had we turned the screw in 2009,their new bankers would have recalled the loans. And don’t forget how big their debts were even after three years of Champions League money. One wee push in 2009 would have been enough to force them over the edge.
Now,this raises another possibility-what with another current similarity to 2009. The huns need about £15m more in loans this year to keep the lights on. They have additional debts to Close Bros and impending judgement in the Sports Direct case. There is also the strong possibility that Hummel and Ideal Sports will sue them too once that judgement is made. They are only solvent on paper,and that only because loans of many millions have been converted into shares. There are now more Rangers shares in circulation than there are grains of sand on the beach! So how can they stay afloat with all this going on? What hope is there for them in the future,or to even have a future?
Well,the answer is the same as in 2009. Win the league and get the Champions League money. Otherwise,they are f….d. And they can only win the league if we continue to give them hope,as we have done over the last year or so. We can,just as in 2009,give them hope by refusing to spend to get the team over the line. Now,for that to happen would be one of two things. For Lawwell to be incompetent or for him to be party to a plan to keep Rangers in business-an appalling vista. I’ll leave it at that.
Above article by BMCUWP.