Rangers: Sandy Easdale sought reassurance over Ibrox role

Dave King
Dave King was unsuccessful in his bid to take control of Rangers

Sandy Easdale, chairman of the Rangers football board, sought assurances that boardroom changes would not force him out of Ibrox, Dave King has revealed.

During discussions about a proposed £16m investment by King and a Rangers fans' consortium, he wanted reassurance that his position was safe.

He was advised there was "no immediate intention to remove him or his brother [James] from the board".

Sandy Easdale subsequently supported Mike Ashley's offer of a £2m loan.

James Easdale is a non-executive director of Rangers International Football Club.

A series of disagreements has broken out following the RIFC chairman David Somers' attempt to justify why the board accepted Ashley's offer ahead of the proposed investment from King and the consortium, and a £3m loan offered by Brian Kennedy.

The latter has revealed that he was prepared to provide the loan at nominal or zero interest, and wanted Ibrox protected in a trust.

Former Rangers director Dave King
"The truth is, when I spoke to Sandy on my recent trip to Scotland his main concern was whether, after investment by our consortium, he would still be able to stay involved with the club."

Somers explained that the board opted for Ashley's loan, which has since been increased by an additional £1m, because it involved less interest and less security,

Sandy Easdale also insisted in a strongly worded statement that he never agreed with the King consortium that they could provide proof of funding and the identity of all of the investors after shareholders agreed in principle to support the investment, which would have seen the group receive an equity share of RIFC and take control of the board.

"I have grown tired of Mr King's antics," Easdale said, after offering his support to Somers' stance. This prompted a further response from King, who had already urged supporters to withdraw their financial support from the club on match days and in terms of merchandise.

Sandy Easdale
Sandy Easdale says he has become tired of Dave King's "antics"

Ashley's Sports Direct already had a commercial arrangement with Rangers through the joint venture Rangers Retail Ltd. The terms of that have since been "normalised" and Sports Direct have entered a "partnership marketing agreement".

Sports Direct have also given up the naming rights to Ibrox, but the company still retains "certain advertising rights". Around 10 administrative staff have been made redundant at Ibrox, including commercial and marketing employees.

"It remains interesting that Sandy continues to take the lead on public company affairs," King said.

"The truth is, when I spoke to Sandy on my recent trip to Scotland his main concern was whether, after investment by our consortium, he would still be able to stay involved with the club.

"After discussion with Paul and George, I confirmed by email to Sandy that we had no immediate intention to remove him or his brother from board involvement at Rangers.

"This concession was clearly not enough to gain his support and the board approved the inferior offer presented by Ashley.

"Furthermore, in my meeting with the Rangers board I confirmed that I could give proof of funds within 24 hours of the board accepting our proposal in principle. I was never asked to do this."

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