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Administrators to fight SFC sanctions

Updated: Tuesday, 24 Apr 2012 16:05

Rangers' administrators fear for the future of the club should the sanctions imposed on them stand
Rangers' administrators fear for the future of the club should the sanctions imposed on them stand

Rangers' administrators have requested an immediate expedited appeals process over the sanctions imposed on the club by the Scottish Football Association's judicial panel last night.

The Glasgow giants were hit with a £160,000 fine and 12-month embargo on signing players aged over 17 after being found guilty of five charges in relation to their finances and the appointment of Craig Whyte as chairman.

In a statement, administrators Duff and Phelps also stated they were not yet satisfied at this stage as to whether the sanctions are lawful.

David Whitehouse, joint administrator, said: "We have today written to the chief executive of the SFA requesting an immediate expedited appeals process over the sanctions imposed on Rangers by the Association's judicial panel.

"The decision of last night's judicial panel is in our opinion quite extraordinary.

"Not only in our opinion do the panel fail to have properly apportioned culpability between the club and Craig Whyte, they appear to have rendered a penalty which could have a very detrimental effect on the ability of the administrators to achieve a sale."

"This, in turn, cannot be in the interests of Rangers Football Club or Scottish football in general."

Administrators claim news of the SFA sanctions could delay further their attempts to named a preferred bidder to take over the administration-hit club.

Former Ibrox director Paul Murray`s Blue Knights requested more time to finalise their plans prior to any announcement on a preferred bidder, while American businessman Bill Miller had previously asked for written assurances that there would be no football sanctions next season.

Whitehouse fears the process could now be hampered further by last night's verdict, arguing it had already been held up by the Scottish Premier League's plans to vote on Monday on financial fair play proposals.

He added: "The football authorities are fully aware that we are in the throes of an extremely complex insolvency situation.

"There has been widespread support across the political spectrum and in the football world for Rangers to be saved as a club and a viable business, last night's decision can only hinder rather than help.

"The decision to prohibit the club from signing new players is akin to a court ordering the administrator of a trading company not to buy stock.

"The principal operating and trading asset of a football club are its players and an inability to sign new players frustrates both the ability of the company to trade and the statutory objectives of administration.

"It is extremely disappointing that approximately three weeks ago purchasers were at the point of confirming unconditional offers which would have achieved the purpose of administration.

"This process was first delayed by the announcements of the SPL to implement the rule changes to be considered on April 30, and has now been further hampered by the sanctions imposed last night."