The message from Rangers’ board is pretty clear – despite all the revenue coming in the past 10+ months, despite the fact £130M has come in from UEL, sales and UCL – Stewart Robertson has made it abundantly stark that little to no spending is taking place from any of it.
No shiny new players, no big signings in January – by pouring cold water over the amount of revenue Rangers have earned from the UCL, Robertson indirectly announced we’re not going to spend much if anything in the winter window.
Fans are wondering why.
They are wondering where the £23M for Bassey, the £16M for Patterson and the £10M for Joe Aribo went. Well, we partly explained that by suggesting that even though those are the fees for those players, they are gross, and that money will funnel in over a longer period as part of instalments.
Now, allowances are made for this by selling clubs – they too will expect payments in instalments, especially bigger signings, but the managing director’s announcement about UCL income, whether accurate or not, does confirm little spending can take place in January either.
Because whether he’s telling the truth or otherwise, he’s giving a reason as to why the UCL cash wasn’t the £40M (he’s claiming less than 20), meaning he’s claiming we have less money than the fans and press think, which consequently gives the club a justified reason (to themselves anyway) as to why we can’t afford to spend next month.
He can do that with all the sales; by revealing ‘reasons’ why we didn’t make this or that, why the press is wrong, why the coffers don’t have the £130M in them, most likely ‘far from it’, he’s pre-empting reasons we can’t spend big in January.
It doesn’t matter what we did or didn’t make, the board can spin it how they like in order to defend not spending.
The accounts are out soon, and while the accountants will have a jolly good look and forensically examine them (Ibrox Noise’s resident financial guru will certainly pore through them with a toothcomb) even if the experts discover a massive profit, the club will find some jargon to defend not spending it on players. To deny it. Or to explain how it’s been ringfenced for something else very important.
In short, we doubt we’ll ever spend much under this board, whether it’s via repaying loans (to themselves, of course) or any other reasons.
We definitely don’t expect much in January beyond loans, freebies and the most modest of spending.