Say No to Newco
On 4th July the SPL face a crucial vote on whether the admit the new formed The Rangers Football Club into their league, or to promote Dundee and consign Rangers to the Scottish Football League's third division.
The rules governing these penalties for liquidation were changed last month so that there would be a vote in Rangers future instead of the automatic relegation that was in place previously. So why do the SPL want different rules for Rangers? The answer is very simple: Money.
It is the myth that has surrounded Scottish football for years; clubs cannot survive without the money that Rangers and Celtic bring in. But is this really the case? There is no indication from Sky that they will terminate the current deal, in fact they have publicly stated they have no plans to stop showing Scottish football.
Some calculations suggest the only team who would suffer great losses are Celtic. Clubs like Motherwell and Hearts would gain in prize money, Dundee United would gain in prize money, and with Dundee replacing Rangers would also suffer almost no losses in ticket sales.
So why do they believe this myth? It's like the perpetual cycle of abuse and control in abusive relationships.
Rangers and Celtic having been telling Scottish football for years that the SPL is reliant on them financially, but that they could do better in the English or European leagues.
The other ten clubs year after year find their best players lured away, not because Celtic or Rangers want the player in their team but because they don't want him in the opposing team.
And like an abusive relationship the old firm tell the other clubs that they deserve this, and the clubs believe them. In 2002 the 10 clubs outside the old firm submitted their resignations from the SPL in protest at Rangers and Celtic using the 11-1 voting system to veto the proposed SPL TV. But in 2003 were persuaded back by apologies, and promises to change in the form of a renegotiated TV deal.
Now Rangers need these 10 clubs for their survival. At least seven of them have to vote with Rangers to allow a new formed Rangers newco admittance to the SPL. And these clubs are still being told it is in their best interest to keep Rangers in the SPL, that it's not just Rangers future at stake but all SPL clubs could go out business without Rangers.
I say like any abusive relationship the clubs need to show Rangers the door, believe in themselves, their clubs, and their fans, and believe they do not need the old firm to survive. In the words of Gloria Gaynor they need to tell Rangers: "Go, walk out the door now, cos your not welcome any more.'
So on the 4th July, a date already synonymous with independence, will the 10 clubs stand and assert control over their own futures, or once again cower in fear of Rangers and Celtic? I think the SPL need to vote no. A yes vote admitting a newly formed Rangers to the SPL tells both Rangers and Celtic they can do what they like, that the rules don't apply to them. The power of money has overpowered the value of sport. We know the old firm can out spend the other 10 clubs in the SPL, but in theory at least they all had to abide by the same set of rules. A newly formed Rangers in the SPL destroys the value of any competition. Admitting Dundee is the right thing to do.