Football - Findlay backs call for change

Former Rangers vice-chairmen Donald Findlay has backed calls for boardroom change at Ibrox - and claimed the directors who have overseen the shambolic past 12 months should be "ashamed" of their reign.

The QC - who served during former owner David Murray's tenure - attacked the PLC directors who have presided over a £14.4million loss during the 13-month period up to June.

He also hit out at Brian Stockbridge after the finance director was forced to hand back a £200,000 bonus awarded to him after the club won the Scottish Third Division title last season.

And Findlay - now chairman of Cowdenbeath - called on shareholders to remove the current board at Thursday's Annual General Meeting.

The build-up to the meeting has been dominated by a bitter dispute between the current directors - including chairman David Somers, chief executive Graham Wallace, James Easdale and Stockbridge - and rebel shareholders Paul Murray, Malcolm Murray, Scott Murdoch and Alex Wilson, who hope to win stakeholder backing to take control of the Glasgow giant's purse strings.

Findlay told Press Association Sport: "The squabbling has gone on too long. It's time to clear the whole lot out and only have people in who want to take the club forward and who do not want to take a penny out of it. If you sit on the board of Rangers, you should not be taking a penny out of it, even if it's just to buy a blazer.

"They need to get people in there who have the best interests of the club at heart and who are capable of running Rangers in the way Rangers should be run.

"I don't know these people - either those on the board or the other side. I spoke to one of the Murrays once about something different altogether but that is it.

"But the AGM has to ensure that the people who come in are prepared to speak publicly, to be scrutinised by the supporters or anyone else that wants to scrutinise them, to put in all their time and effort to put Rangers Football Club back where it should be and to say that they will not take a penny from the club, neither now nor in the future.

"If someone has a job, then you pay them the going rate. But as for the directors, they should not be taking a penny out of that club as far as I'm concerned."

Rangers raised £22.2 million when it was listed on the London Stock Exchange in December - but Stockbridge has already gone on the record admitting the 54-time Scottish champions could be down to their last £1million by April.

Former chief executive Charles Green led that IPO process but has since been succeeded by Craig Mather and now Wallace. Malcolm Murray was also on the board at that point as chairman but he too has seen former manager Walter Smith and now Somers follow him into the roll.

Findlay added: "The way the club was floated was mucked up from the beginning. The wrong people did it, the wrong people invested, the wrong people are now in charge.

"The people responsible for what Rangers Football Club has done to itself and the embarrassment and distress it has caused its supporters should be ashamed of themselves and should not be allowed anywhere near it.

"These people do not own Rangers - it does not belong to any one person. They may be in charge for the time being but the club belongs to the people who support it. They are the only ones who matter, nobody else."

As well as his bonus, Stockbridge is paid an annual salary of over £200,000, while former chief executive Charles Green earned £933,000 during his 13 months at the helm.

However, Sandy Easdale - brother of James and the new chairman of the club's football board - claimed last week that he does not take a wage from the Rangers coffers.

But Findlay, who stepped down as the club's vice-chairman in 1999 after he was caught on camera singing a controversial anthem, said: "When Sir David Murray and I ran Rangers, not one of us took a penny out of the club.

"Someone who is the club's internal accountant should be paid the commercial rate if you are going to get the right guy. Of course he should.

"But frankly the notion that a financial director should be given a £200,000 bonus for winning the Third Division is ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. And that tells me that whoever made that decision should not be running Rangers Football Club."