Rangers face Scottish FA charges over articles of association and a disciplinary rule

An outside view of Rangers' Ibrox Stadium
Rangers have until 22 May to respond the SFA charges

Rangers have been charged by the Scottish FA on two counts concerning the granting of a Uefa license to the club between 2010 and 2012.

The first charge relates to compliance with SFA, Uefa and Fifa regulations and the second relates to upholding integrity and good faith.

Potential sanctions range from a fine to ejection from SFA competition.

The Ibrox club say they will "fiercely resist" the notice of complaint, with a principal hearing date set for 26 June.

Rangers won the Scottish Premier League at the end of season 2010-11 and featured in European competition at the start of the following season. Rangers then entered administration in 2012 and eventually started season 2012-13 in the fourth tier of Scottish football.

To compete in European competitions, clubs must adhere to strict Uefa rules that should be enforced by the country's governing body - in this case, the SFA. The rule in question relates to Uefa's insistence that club's should have no outstanding payables to tax authorities.

Rangers said they were disputing a tax bill (disputes are allowed) that came to be known as 'the wee tax case' but court testimony during the trial of the club's former owner, Craig Whyte, contradicted this notion.

The SFA have been taking Queen's Counsel advice for months and the June hearing will most likely be chaired by a sitting law lord.

In detailing the charges, the SFA say member clubs and their officials and players "shall be subject to and shall comply with the Articles and any statutes, regulations, directives, codes, decisions and International Match Calendar promulgated by the Board or by a Standing Committee, committee or sub-committee thereof, or by Fifa or Uefa or by the Court of Arbitration for Sport".

The second specifically mentions members' requirement to "behave towards the Scottish FA and other members with the utmost good faith".

The governing body also highlight the rule that members shall "observe the principles of loyalty, integrity and sportsmanship in accordance with the rules of fair play" and "be subject to and comply with the articles and any statutes, regulations, directives, codes, decisions and International Match Calendar promulgated by the Board, the Professional Game Board, the Non-Professional Game Board, the Judicial Panel Protocol, a committee or sub-committee, Fifa, Uefa or the Court of Arbitration for Sport".

And the SFA insist that "officials, its team officials and its players act in accordance" with that rule.

Rangers response

Rangers won promotion to the Premiership in 2016 and have finished third in the top flight over the past two seasons.

And the club said in a statement: "The Rangers Football Club ("the Club") was informed today by the Scottish FA ("SFA") that, after an eight-and-a-half month investigation, the SFA will not be proceeding with a Notice of Complaint in respect of the submission made by the Club to the SFA at the end of March 2011 with regard to the issue of the Club's Uefa licence for the following season.

"The club is unsurprised that it has now finally been accepted by the SFA that the accusations made against the club were groundless. The club questions whether the time, cost and expense of this investigation was justified and was a good use of the SFA's limited resources.

"Disappointingly, and presumably rather than accept that the investigation was a waste of all parties' time and resources, the club has been served with a new revised Notice of Complaint relating to the monitoring period subsequent to the grant of the Uefa licence. This new Notice of Complaint neglects to properly capture the provisions of prior agreements made between the Club and the SFA.

"The club will fiercely resist this reconstructed Notice of Complaint. Unfortunately, monies that should be available to Scottish youth and grassroots football will be diverted into another rehearsal of seven-year-old debates on the rights and wrongs of events that the SFA should have prevented at a time when doing so would have served a useful purpose.

"It seems that Scottish Football is, once again, being directed by individuals intent on harming the Scottish game, Rangers Football Club and its supporters by pursuing a course that has no sensible purpose or reasonable prospect of success."

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