Celtic and Rangers to England - for real?


to Start off, the rest of the other SPL teams cannot have their cake and eat it.

10 teams resigned from the SPL over the TV row, so they have no grounds for complaint of the Old Firm to end up in the EPL. They made the threat, so they can’t complain if they move away.

There has been much talk of a European super league to begin with. You point out that it dosent matter if Berwick are from england, because they are a small team.

What if Rupert Murdoch sunk millions into the club, raised them up to the top of the SPL and then tried to get them into the EPL, how would UEFA react? Could they still disallow the move on the same grounds?

If we leave aside the sociological factors (crowd trouble) there is very little cons to moving to the Nationwide or the EPL. I would welcome the challenge presented, plus the oppertunity to dick all over the Huns in different competitions.

Hail Hail.

The size of Berwick Rangers is a moot factor here, and is only based on guesswork by one or two of us. It’s probably more significant that the clubs currently playing on the “wrong side” of a border have done so for years before the governing bodies had any power to do anything about it. So these cases are faits accompli and UEFA are stuck with them.

Derry City would be an exception to that, but the governing bodies have sometimes been persuaded to allow special dispensation in unusual political circumstances - it’s the same reason why FIFA don’t force Israel to play in the Asian section of World Cup qualifying competitions.

In the same way, I reckon that they’d have to allow a team in former Yugoslavia to pick their own league opposition if that’s what it took to prevent fans shooting one another.

But changing leagues for the sake of convenience or to chase more money would be a different matter, and UEFA have already voiced their opposition to that principle. We’re still waiting to see if they’re going to stick to that this time (and I don’t recall hearing them complain about the OF playing in the Worthington Cup). But if they allowed Celtic and Rangers to move south for league games it would be open season all round.

If they prevent them from playing in the Nationwide, or the EPL, and the SPL don’t want them, where would UEFA propose they play?

Well I don’t know if any UEFA officials post here, but I expect that’s what we’re going to find out during the summer. It’s a conundrum isn’t it?

one that would baffle Richard Whiteley and that nice bird from Dictionary Corner. :wink:

Yeah Twisty
…and we have a nine in dictionary corner…

Update: That respected journal of footie Rock 101 - Vancouver's Classic Rock magazine reckons [it's all baloney](http://www.rock101.com/news/?subject=Rugby-Soccer&&file=R051208AU.xml) anyhow. Hmmm.

On Sunday, Football League chief executive David Burns called the reports of the move "absolute rubbish." 

"We have a regular board meeting this Thursday and Celtic and Rangers is not on the agenda and it won't be on the agenda," Burns said. 

Burns said it would not be practical to add Rangers and Celtic. In addition, the governing body of European soccer - UEFA - has voiced concerns that the two clubs playing outside Scotland would set an unwelcome precedent.

Saw that BBC hooligan doc by the way. Didn't tell us anything we didn't already know and hate.

There was a perfectly good reason for Derry City not playing in the Northern Ireland league back in the early 70s (when they left it, although they didn’t join the League of Ireland until 1985). It is far less justifiable today. Cliftonville seem to get on OK up there.

I’m really hard pressed to think of other clubs that are in a similar enough situation to us for UEFA to worry about setting a precedent. The previously-given example of Dynamo Kiev joining the Russian league doesn’t really wash - I mean the Russian league’s hardly the EPL is it? And if the other Ukrainian teams have announced their intention to withdraw from the league Dynamo are in, I must have missed it.

I guess I just don’t see why Celtic and Rangers couldn’t simply be seen as another anomaly rather than a precedent.

I suspect Mr Desmond and Mr Murray can afford decent lawyers who will be arguing pretty much the same thing. There seems to be a consensus view that this will happen sooner or later, but that there’ll be a lot of squabbling until it does, and that will stop it happening this year. The Scottish boycott isn’t planned to begin until the 2004-05 season anyway. I’ll believe it when I see it, but do expect to see it.

However, the (English) Football League have shown a remarkable naivity over the ITV Digital fiasco already - two contracts with the TV companies instead of one, one contract signed by all parties, the other not, the one not signed tying Carlton and Granada to the Digital liabilities etc. etc. It all looks like the parties to these decisions are motivated by greed over all things without any regard for common sense, the dangers of haste, or even legal probity. So you might as well flip a coin as try to make a prediction based on logic.

Of all those that are in a position to decide one way or the other, the people who want it to happen are out to make money, the ones who don’t want it are trying to keep the money, and the ones who spend the most on lawyers and on palm greasing will win, it’s as simple as that.

Nevertheless, Sky Sports have confirmed the Football League’s denial of The Observer article. The security issue and time are the reasons cited, which do make sense.

Interestingly the BBC have released a less frosty than usual statement from UEFA:

<my bold>

But it also leaves open the matter of qualification for European competitions. Which/how many teams from a reduced Scottish League would qualify? Would Celtic and Rangers be treated as Scottish qualifiers from an English league?

There’s still plenty of mileage left in this argument. Keep your eyes peeled for any outcome from Thursday’s meeting at the EFL.

Yeah! And Everton should go play in Switzerland, Chelsea in Italy, Rotherham in Norway and Aston Villa in fucking Japan.



Purely from the standpoint of a fan (i.e. ignoring all the legalities and other hard stuff), I would like to see the move in that it would give greater depth to ‘English’ football. The period since the creation of the Premiership hasn’t been ultra-competitive. Only three clubs have won the title and the double has been done four times (compared to three times in the previous 100 years). It would appear that the gap between the top four or five and everyone else has grown significantly. While the OF may just replace members of the elite rather than add to it, it should add a greater competitive edge to the league. As was said previously, it would do the same for the SPL.

While us Irish care little for the implications it might have for national teams, it will involve some hard choices. There are a large number of Irish fans who support a Premiership club and Celtic - a call will have to be made. No such problem for me as I’m exclusively in Gunner heaven;)

Why not a straight swap?

Rangers and Celtic join the EPL, and Man United and Arsenal join the SPL.

(West Ham fan)

Hey! You take that back, or I’ll bash your fucking skull in!


Actually, while crowd trouble still exists here, it has gone down dramatically over the past 5 years. It would appear that the revolting Battle at Beverwijk was somewhat of a turning point in this development. That was 1996, I think. Absolute madness.
Overall, I’d say supporter violence is no worse in Holland now than it is in England or Italy.

Having said that: I’m against all this cross border nonsense. London_Calling rightly states that a lot of talented Dutch players leave for bigger and better paying clubs in the UK, Spain, or Italy, but that doesn’t mean the local competition is meaningless. Actually, the current line-up for Ajax is a very interesting mix of local young talent and “imports”, if you will.

Neuchatel? Gt Gallen? Grasshoppers? I wouldn’t mind the occasional game (as long as it’s not in the Intertoto Cup). Anybody want some Sprüngli brought back?

Bring back what you like as long as it’s not Ramon Vega.

I always enjoy going to Holland, Coldie, and I’ve got especially happy memories of the last time my boys played a competitive fixture in Rotterdam, but although I don’t doubt that Feyenoord’s and Ajax’s troublemakers are no worse than our lot these days, putting them together would surely give a chance for old wounds to be reopened. I’m sure you know that at least one person round here (may he die screaming and alone) would be delighted to see it :(.

Hey, I saw Suzanne last time I was in Zürich - he speaks very highly of you ;).

Sadly, you’re right there.

But since I think the whole cross-border business is bollocks anyway, we don’t even have to worry about that. Except for European matches in the Champions League vein. And violence seems to be well under control in those competitions.

Or Rangers - I was forgetting our schismatic brethren;) Of course they wouldn’t want to be referred to as Irish but that’s a whole other show.

I thought Suzanne was still at Watford?

I don’t give a fook where Suzanne is, just keep him away from my penalty area.
Coldie - I’m against it as well. Even putting aside the craven financial motivations of those concerned (shareholder values of the Scottish plc’s as well as the more direct teevee revenue issue on both sides), it’s just not that appealing as a spectacle. Just more of the same when at least Dutch football offers something a little different.

Give it three-five years and the Premier League revenue’s will look pretty tasty to the Dutch teams. Possibly.
Hey, why don’t Celtic and Rangers relocate to Milton Keynes ? :wink: