Ally McCoist, manager of fallen giants Rangers, blasted the
Scottish Premier League and the Scottish Football Association
over conditions regarding the transfer of the club's membership
of the governing body after it assigned only temporary membership
to owners Sevco Scotland.
That means McCoist feels he is in the dark as the team head for a
weekend Challenge Cup date with Brechin awaiting the full
membership transfer, expected next week.
The newco club are subject to a delayed one-year transfer embargo
and liability for Rangers' football debts while the SPL probe
into alleged undisclosed payments to Rangers players since 1998
could yet see Rangers stripped of titles.
McCoist blasted the conditions which hang over the club as they
prepare for life in the Third Division.
In a club statement, McCoist said: "Forty-eight hours from now,
we are supposed to start the season with a game at Brechin and,
as I sit here today, I don't know exactly what our status in the
game is, where our players that we have should be registered -
and what the future holds for us going into next week.
"It's a ludicrous situation - and I owe it to our fans to make my
views known on it.
"No-one is denying that Rangers were badly mismanaged for 10
months. Nor are we disputing that we should be punished for that.
We have been. We accept that punishment and want to start putting
the past behind us and move forward.
"But that is not being allowed to happen - and I have to ask
"In recent days, I have been in a number of meetings with Stewart
Regan, Rod Petrie and other senior SFA figures - and (I) despair
at the lack of leadership shown."
He went on: "As for the SPL, they seem determined to pursue as
hostile an agenda as possible towards Rangers.
"They kicked us out of the SPL - which was their right - and we
acknowledge that - but that doesn't seem enough for Neil
Doncaster and some of his board.
"Not only as they are withholding our SPL prize money for last
season - they won't tell us how much it is but we reckon it to be
Blasting what he termed vested interests in the SPL, McCoist
welcomed the support for his club from the Scottish Football
League in voting for their inclusion in the lower leagues after
the original Rangers were liquidated.
But he said the SPL establishment seemed "determined to strip us
of every bit of our dignity."
He concluded: "In recent days I have bumped into Celtic, Hearts
and Motherwell fans, and they were saying the same thing: It's
time to stop kicking Rangers and start getting Scottish football
looking forward not back.
"I couldn't agree more."