Rangers player cuts delayed as administrators seek quick sale

 

Administrators tonight warned Rangers would not finish the season unless they secured a quick sale or implemented “very severe” cost-cutting measures.

Duff and Phelps announced they were "accelerating" the sale of the club after failing to finalise a wage-reduction agreement with players that would have limited redundancies in return for cuts of 75% for the highest earners.

They had been optimistic of success after failing to finalise personal details with about half a dozen players last night but no deal emerged today and administrators then delivered a stark warning about the scale of the club's financial problems.

The dramatic confession over the dangers of not fulfilling their final nine Clydesdale Bank Premier League fixtures came after Ibrox director Dave King claimed liquidation was "inevitable".

Joint-administrator David Whitehouse said: "The club is in a perilous financial situation and that should not be under-estimated.

"Regrettably, we have been unable to agree cost-cutting measures with the playing staff on terms that will preserve value in the business.

"We understand the players' position as the scale of wage cuts required to achieve these savings without job losses were very substantial indeed.

"In view of this, we are faced with a situation of making redundancies within the playing staff on such a scale that would materially erode the value of the playing squad.

"We are striving to strike a balance where cost-cutting measures can be implemented but do not destroy the fabric of the playing squad to the extent that it will inhibit the prospect of a sale."

Administrators, who took control on February 14, have stated the need to slash £1million from expenditure each month.

However, one of the interested parties, former director Paul Murray, warned that making significant cuts to the squad would leave Rangers less attractive to buyers as it could cost £20million to replace the lost players.

Administrators had set a March 16 deadline for first indicative bids and they warned that failure to achieve a quick sale would have serious consequences.

Whitehouse added: "No-one should be in any doubt that in the absence of sufficient cost-cutting measures or receipt of substantial unplanned income, the club will not be able to fulfil its fixtures throughout the remainder of the season.

"As a result, we are expediting the sale process and over the next few days we will be holding discussions with prospective purchasers who have declared their interest.

"The manager, Ally McCoist, will play an integral part in these discussions.

"If, however, it becomes apparent that the sale process cannot be accelerated there will be no choice but to implement very severe cost-cutting measures at the club."

PA

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