Rangers: Dave King and current Ibrox board in discussions

By Richard WilsonBBC Scotland
Members of the Rangers board in the stand

Talks have opened between Dave King and the Rangers board in an attempt to reach agreement on the club's future.

Directors reiterated that they have "no intention" of using Ibrox or Murray Park for securities on any borrowing.

Given the discussions, King thought it prudent to stay away from the 2-0 victory over Dunfermline.

The vast majority of the home fans at Ibrox still took part in a blue card display backing King and in protest against the board.

King, a former director, flew into Glasgow on Thursday, following two days of meetings with Rangers International Football Club shareholders in London.

The South Africa-based businessman spent Friday with Rangers supporters' groups and influential fans, as well as opening dialogue with the board, who released a statement after Saturday's match.

"It was a helpful, open and honest discussion, covering the important issues facing Rangers, the concerns of the fans and the club's competitive aspirations," the statement said.

"Both parties agreed that the aims of the club are to compete at the highest levels of Scottish and European football. The board confirmed that the development of the club's business plan is being undertaken on this basis.

Former Rangers director Dave King
Former Rangers director Dave King

"Mr King was helpful in outlining the concerns of supporters in relation to communications from the club and was reassured by plans to announce the results of the business review and trading update in the next few weeks, ahead of the season ticket renewal deadline.

"In response to Mr King's concerns about the security of Ibrox and Murray Park, the board reiterated that it has no intention of using these properties for any measure of security.

"The board has previously stated that investment will be required as part of the medium-term strategy. This position remains unchanged, however the timing and amount of such future investment has not yet been finalised.

"Fans will be kept informed in this regard and the board envisages that supporters would be given the opportunity to participate at the appropriate time.

"The board and Mr King agreed that the meeting was productive and that both parties share a common vision for the future of the club."

The Union of Fans - a coalition of supporter groups - responded to King's call for season ticket renewal money to be pooled in a trust fund rather than given to the club.

King, who invested £20m in the club under David Murray, is adamant that fan power is key and that supporters should seek transparency and commitments on the club's finances from the board.

In return for releasing the funds, the UoF want security over Ibrox and Murray Park. This was in response to the Albion Car Park and Edmiston House being used as security for a £1.5m loan provided by the shareholders, Sandy Easdale and Laxey Partners.

Fans expect to hold further meetings next week with King, who has pledged not to fly back to South Africa until a strategy is in place for Rangers' future.

With finances stretched, Rangers must either cut costs to run the club on the reduced incomes of the lower leagues, or seek fresh investment to fund next season's promotion bid and an eventually title challenge with Celtic.

King is willing to invest in a fresh share issue, although that requires board and shareholder approval.