From benevolence to belligerence?

I believe that there as a time when General Ashley had a plan for this Rangers, and it was, within his business world view, essentially benign.

He saw Sevco as a retail outlet and an advertising hoarding for Sports Direct.

On the footie side he, perhaps, perceived Ibrox to be something of a rudimentary finishing school of hard knocks for his Newcastle starlets.

Overall though not such a bad deal for the new club.

Last October he prevented an imminent insolvency event by providing a £3m loan.

Philip Nash had already sourced Administrators in the weeks before the extension of that credit line.

The provision of this facility led to Ashley’s two trusted lieutenants, Mr Derek Llambias and Mr Barry Leach being installed in the Blue Room.

This duo immediately started to ramp up the austerity programme that Philip Tudor Nash had already commenced in 2013.

In January, he provided more liquidity that further entrenched his position at the top of the Marble Staircase.

At this point here was close to zero chance of an insolvency event happening at Ibrox.

Of course, the March Putsch derailed all of that.

I understand that General Ashley has now deployed his best forensic people to work exclusively on Mr David Cunningham King, Sevco and the SFA.

A source close to the action said to me today:

“This is not about money now for Ashley. His plan for Rangers went out of the window in March. He was willing to work with the club, but now it’s about revenge.”

I trust that this very well-placed source has this one wrong and that Mr Ashley’s motives towards Sevco are overwhelmingly benevolent and giving.

One thing that the Sports Direct appear to believe is that Mr David Cunningham King was not appropriately ratified by the Professional Game Board (PGB) of the SFA.

I am told that the Sports Direct people think that everything was in order for the ratification of Mr Paul Murray, but not for the South African based entrepreneur.

I have asked the Association this question, and I will publish any answer should they respond to me.

On the subject of communications, I believe that the author of the recent statement of Mr King’s recent statement was their new media Prophet.

Apparently the tone and substance of the club communique had one professional PR chap suitably rattled as he thought that it did not come up to the required Level.

However, that be as it may, but if General Ashley is now on a retribution mission, then there could be more dark days ahead.

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