Chief financial officer James Taylor has curiously claimed the increase of Rangers’ spending in the recent accounts compared with the previous year was because we got into the Champions League.
Speaking about the numbers formally, the club’s financial boss alleged that Rangers spent more because the club secured Champions League participation in the financial year of the recent accounts, in logic we must admit we’re a little bewildered by.
We’re really not sure what Taylor means by this – he appears to be hinting at increased overheads as a result of being in the Champions League, which is the first we’ve ever heard of such a thing – yes, players will get win bonuses but they got them in the Europa League too, and Rangers of course didn’t win any group matches. The prize money for getting to the group stage is around £18.5M to Rangers, as we saw from the accounts. So quite why the overheads or ‘cost base’ went up because of this we have no idea.
He goes on:
Taylor here seems to be saying that the overheads are flexible, and it’s performance-related rather than structurally-based, but we’re just not quite sure what the increase is for.
Indeed, he appears to be pinning the entire overhead increase of around £20M on Rangers qualifying for the Champions League, despite the fact the whole point of that competition is the £18.5M+ prize money the club gets ‘as a bonus’ for getting there.
He further claims that Rangers’ participation in the Europa League this season should see it come back down, and it is true that aside from these accounts, Rangers’ overheads season on season have been in the £85M range (aside the Covid season), and all of those were Europa League seasons.
Being in the Champions League, for some reason, instead of earning us more, appears, according to Taylor, to have in fact COST the club more and it’s worth learning why. When one examines the overheads, in fact the biggest cost spike is ‘staff’ – it’s gone up fully £10M between 2022 and 2023 from £54M to £64M.
So that’s players, simple as that. Now that’s not just the wages for players, but all-in staff costs – but not signing fees. So basically Rangers’ staff bill rose by £10M and Taylor claims that’s Champions League related. We’re not quite sure where the link is there or why the £18.5M received for UCL didn’t leave that as £8.5M profit.