Scottish Football - Fans backing King's plans to collect season ticket cash

A Rangers supporters coalition will continue with plans to collect season ticket money for next season as the boardroom strife at the Ibrox club continues.

PA Sport
Scottish Football - Fans backing King's plans to collect season ticket cash

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A Rangers fans' group has given its backing to Dave King

The Union of Fans, comprised of the Rangers Supporters Assembly, Rangers Supporters Trust and Rangers Supporters Association, is backing former Light Blues director Dave King's plan to establish a trust into which fans could pay their season book cash, as opposed to giving the money directly to the League One champions.

The coalition's announcement comes as the row between South Africa-based businessman King and the Rangers board intensified after he issued another statement questioning its integrity on Sunday night.

King urged Light Blues fans not to buy season tickets and accused the board of an ''extreme act of bad faith''.

The Glaswegian was upset that the club have asked fans to renew their season tickets before the completion of a 120-day review of the business' operations.

Rangers, who have referred the matter to legal advisers, noted King's initial statement ''with astonishment'' and said he had made ''a number of untrue allegations'', but have not responded to his latest comments.

In a statement released on Monday, the Union of Fans reiterated its backing of King.

The statement read: "Following discussions on the release of season ticket renewals, the Union of Fans would like to confirm that, in line with Dave King's statements over the weekend, we will now be pushing forward with plans to collect season ticket money.

"The money placed into the account will be released to the club, in full, as soon as they agree to give season ticket holders a security over Ibrox Stadium and Auchenhowie.

"There will be no drip feeding of funds and we do not consider that the board has any legitimate reason to reject this proposal.

"For the past two weeks we have, through a third party, put forward a plan to Graham Wallace which would have seen a security over Ibrox and Auchenhowie granted to trustees in favour of all season ticket holders.

"The security would have diminished as games were played and would have been discharged at the end of next season. We felt this would provide the board with an opportunity to build trust with fans over a reasonable period of time.

"We have received no response from the board to this proposal, or to the offer of a meeting to discuss things amicably. This board's public pronouncements about engagement and trust are a sham.

"To be clear, had the board complied, it would have meant that we would not have needed to collect season ticket money in a separate account.

"It would have allowed the fans and the club to carry on with renewals as normal and would have removed any element of confrontation from the process.

"Despite repeated acceptance from Mr Wallace that the board do not have the trust of fans, and repeated claims that they are seeking to engage with them, this board have made no serious attempt to improve things.

"Their haste to release renewals before the completion of the 120-day business review, has now forced our hand.

"Legal advisers have been engaged and are working on the legal framework and bank account required to collect money.

"We would ask in the meantime that fans do not renew prior to evaluating this board's '120-day' review to take the club forward.

"We would also ask them to be vigilant and ensure they are not signed up for auto renewal, which they would need to cancel in writing to the ticket office before the April 28.

"The vast majority of season ticket holders on the four-month payment option from last year will fall into this category."

The statement continued: "We do not consider that there is any prospect of this action forcing the club into administration.

"It would be a gross dereliction of directors' duties for this board to allow that to happen when substantial investment is on offer to them and when they can ensure they receive all season ticket money by securing Ibrox and Auchenhowie in favour of season ticket holders.

"We also have concerns that, even with all the season ticket money available to them, they will not be able to complete the season without further investment.

"Furthermore we reject suggestions this will push the board into securing Ibrox in return for further loans. Again, this would be in breach of their directorial duties when they would first have to reject a more favourable offer from the fans.

"We will be extremely interested to hear the board's answers to the four questions posed by Dave King in his latest statement.

"Particularly the question relating to Graham Wallace's undertaking to shareholders at the AGM that there was 'sufficient cash in the business to fund the ongoing needs of the club in the near term'. We do not believe this statement to have been true.

"Our fans have an opportunity to safeguard Ibrox - we sincerely hope they do not succumb to emotional blackmail from people who know nothing about what our club means to us and that they use the only power they hold for the good of Rangers."

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