Less than a club

You should always be careful for what you wish for.

Since Sir David Murray had his corporate credit card cut in two by Lloyds bank The People have been praying for a billionaire.

Of course they were told by an award winning stenographer that Craig Whyte was that guy and that is why they cheered him down Edmiston drive.

In May 2011 The People thought that they had themselves a new benefactor.


We now know that Murray bankrolled his Rangers with Other People’s Money (OPM).

Ibrox became a gathering point for highly paid foreign stars.

The fans became addicted to it and in time it proved to be the OPM of the masses.

For Murray the answer to everything was just to keep spending money on imported players, even if that meant not paying tax in the accepted way.

Well we now know how that one played out.

On the orders of the bank he sold the club to Craig Whyte and he proved to be the final owner of Rangers before they expired in 2012.

Charlie never presented himself as anything other than a Yorkshire man with big hands.

Throughout it all The People did not let go of the dream of another billionaire at the top of the Marble Staircase.

Well Mike Ashley is the real deal.

He actually has the level of wealth that The People were told that Craig Whyte possessed.

Mr Ashley recently took a punt on Tesco shares.

His stake in the game was £42 million.

That is not a large sum for big Mike.

It is worth remembering that his stake in Sevco roulette wheel is very small beer indeed.

That said he will want to be seen as the smart guy in the deal and, so far, he does not seem to have put a foot wrong.

He has the commercial operation, he bought out Hargreave Hale and now he has cash on the table that will allow RIFC/TRFC to continue until the end of the season.

A veteran Ashley watcher told me yesterday that he is a proud man and doesn’t like to think that he has been had in a deal.

Moreover that the view was that he had not carried out his Due Diligence when buying the Tyneside club.

That experience has made him more cautious.

Derek Llambias will attempt what austerity measures he can without an Insolvency Event.

However I suspect that most of those savings have already been achieved by Philip Nash.

Ashley will know that RIFC is riven with ‘Onerous Contracts’ as he has several of them himself.

As the deal was being closed Brian Kennedy reappeared and Planet Fitba was teleported back to 2012.

However this Quantum Leap was merely a hologram and I understand that there was no real substance to the Kennedy ‘offer’.

When asked for the money he stated to the RIFC that he would have to put it together.

The Daily Radar made more of the Kennedy story because they had it as their splash that day.

However, only Ashley had real money on the table.

Now he will drip in life support loans into the company/club/celestial entity and his grip will incrementally tighten on Sevco.

Just as in February with the Laxey/Easdale loan this £2 million is secured against Edmiston House and the iconic Albion car park.

Of course The People need hope and the Stenographers have been trying their best to peddle them some hope.

The Sports Direct into Europe via Rangers scenario is though rather farfetched.

The football budget required to do this would be many multiples of the value of the club/company.

This would mean that Ashley would subvent the club by financing a structured operating loss.

The desire for a Sugar Daddy is woven into the fabric of the Ibrox crowd.

I do not think that Mr Ashley is such a benefactor and unlike Craig Whyte he really is a billionaire.

Once more like all of his decisions it will be for the maximum commercial benefit of his business empire.

I do not think that many believe that Mike Ashley will use Sevco as a vehicle for his ego in the way that Murray used Rangers.

Of course the Succulent Stenographers are programmed to grovel to anyone who has the keys to Ibrox.

With many of The People being in open revolt towards the current regime they have had to steer a careful course.

However if Ashley starts to win over the home crowd at Ibrox then the hacks will indulge in their special brand of Ingratiating Journalism.

That said I would be very surprised if there is a charm offensive by Ashley or any of his people.

It simply not his style anymore.

He tried that at Newcastle and it didn’t end well.

This is perhaps an appropriate juncture to remind you dear reader that the narrative constructed here from 2013 onwards, of Sevco being in cash crisis, has been utterly vindicated in 2014.

RIFC/TRFC will now only avoid an Insolvency Event if Life Support Loans are dripped in by Mr Ashley.

As those debts pile up then the owner of Newcastle will own Sevco’s debt.

That will put him in charge of any future Insolvency Event should he wish to press that button.

His guys, once in place, will try to implement cost cutting without Administration.

For the avoidance of  doubt Sevco are no longer a club, but an advertising hoarding and a useful retail outlet for Sports Direct.

Everything else is secondary and subordinate to that.

However the new owner is a billionaire.

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