Rangers' Union of Fans propose Ibrox and Auchenhowie bond for ticket cash

RANGERS fans have refused to back down in their calls for Ibrox and Murray Park to be put in their control before they hand over season ticket cash this summer - despite stark warnings from chairman David Somers that the move could threaten the club's future.

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David Somers has warned Rangers fans over the club's future
David Somers has warned Rangers fans over the club's future

The Rangers Union of Fans are pressing ahead with plans that would see supporters put season ticket cash into a trust before being handed to the club in exchange for control of the Gers' two major assets, with more than 6,500 pledging to back the scheme so far.

Somers admitted that "material uncertainty" over that source of income may cast doubt about Rangers' ability to continue as a going concern on the day the Light Blues announced a £3.7million loss in their interim accounts to December 2013.

A statement from the UoF said: "The fans have shown outstanding loyalty and commitment in the past two years, both via the IPO and two sets of unprecedented season ticket sales, but we have seen that loyalty thrown back in our faces as money has been squandered.

"Mr Somers acknowledges how vital season ticket cash is and the need for the board to build trust with the fans.

"What better way to do that than to give security over vital club assets - Ibrox and Auchenhowie - to the fans in return for that much-needed income?

"For the avoidance of doubt, there is no plan to drip-feed season ticket money on a game-by- game basis.

"The proposal is simply that season ticket money is paid in a lump sum, prior to the start of the season, in return for security over club assets.

"This will allow fans to be safe in the knowledge that no matter what happens the club's assets will be in good hands."

Despite banking around £22million when Rangers International Football Club plc was floated on the Alternative Investment Market two years ago, the champions were down to their last £3.5million as of December 31 last year.

Since then, the Gers have taken in £1.5m in loans from director Sandy Easdale and shareholder George Letham, who this week took over the £1m deal struck with Laxey Partners Ltd and saved Rangers more than £100,000 in interest.

Somers and chief executive Graham Wallace were only appointed to the board weeks before the Ibrox hierarchy survived a coup at a stormy AGM and the Union of Fans have accused Wallace of misleading supporters and shareholders.

The statement added: "The CEO, Graham Wallace, stated at the AGM that there was 'sufficient cash in the business to fund the ongoing needs of the club in the near term'.

"It appears from both these interim results and the recent loan of £1.5m from shareholders that this statement at the AGM may have been somewhat misleading.

"It is unclear exactly how it could have been stated by the board at that time, with any confidence, that there was sufficient cash even for the short term and we would like Mr Wallace and Mr Somers to explain this as a matter of urgency."

The news of more significant losses at Ibrox comes in the week that former director Dave King revealed he is willing to plough tens of millions of pounds into the Gers to ensure they are in shape on and off the field ahead of their likely return to the Premiership the season after next.

The UoF said: "Given the obvious and urgent need for investment, we would once again urge the board to accept Dave King's offer of £30m so that both the fans and the club can move forward in harmony."

Football

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