When Ankaragucu and Rangers met in Europe in 1973 even the great Uri Geller couldn't have predicted that both clubs would share the same destiny nearly 40 years on. Rangers are Scotland's number 1 club with a World Record 54 Titles to their name. Cup Winners Cup Winners in 1972 the club have had some wonderful players in their History, players such as Jim Baxter, Davie Cooper, Brian Laudrup, Paul Gascoigne and Ally McCoist to name a few.
At the same time Ankaragucu have spent most of their time fighting relegation in the Turkish Super Lig or Challenging for a Europa Cup place. I have been a season ticket holder at Ibrox for 18 years and seen some memorable times, I was there to see us win The Treble, I saw us win at Easter Road on Helicopter and I was there on Walter Smith's last season when we won the league at Rugby Park against the odds.
There have been so many tears of Joy and Tears of Hurt following Rangers, but nothing compares to what is going on at the moment. Two men Hakan Kutlu and Ally McCoist took on footballs toughest jobs just over a year ago. Hakan Kutlu was a one man club who played for Ankaragucu all his career while Ally McCoist a Rangers die hard and the clubs Top Goalscorer of all time took over his boyhood hero's.
Ankaragucu are facing liquidation on July 7th, this is due to two men Cemal Aydin and Melih Gokcek who have put the club over £50 Million in debt. Melih Gokcek was found guilty of an illegal takeover of the club which Cemal Aydin allowed to happen. After spending £35 Million on new players, Melih left the club without having paid the players for 6 months and outstanding transfer fees to other clubs. When Cemal won control of the club again he also refused to pay the players, this meant every first team player left the club. Hakan Kutlu stayed on with the Youth Team and Team Captain Aydin Toscali to work unpaid until the end of the season. The team had to play in the snow without a change of Strip, the players had to push their own Team Bus when it was stuck due to bad weather, all whilst being humiliated every week loosing in the Turkish Super Lig. The club were handed a transfer ban which meant no new players could be brought in.
There are businessmen of Ankara who want to help the club, but due to the power of Cemal Aydin and Melih Gokcek cant and it looks like the club will die unless Cemal resigns from the club. To add insult Melih Gokcek has stated he will change the name of his current team Ankaraspor to Ankaragucu A.S if they are allowed back in the Super Lig. Ankaraspor were kicked out Turkish Football for their involvement with Ankaragucu.
At the same time Ally McCoist took over from Walter Smith and under new Owner Craig Whyte hoped that he could challenge rival Neil Lennon and Celtic for the SPL title. Rangers were already facing a Tax Case from David Murray's time at the club, it was also claimed that David Murray had been using EBT'S and players had dual contracts. It seemed like every player Ally McCoist wanted to sign he missed out on. Instead of the club bringing in Quality players, McCoist instead had to put up with budget signings no better than what he had. The club were kicked out of both the Champions League and Europa League against Malmo and Maribor. Rangers also gave up a 15 point lead over rivals Celtic in the league having lost Seven Naismith to Injury.
When the January transfer window arrived Nikica Jelavic was sold and no one brought in, a few weeks later the club were in administration. Craig Whyte had not paid Tax and PAYE and had appointed Duff and Phelps to head the administration. The players agreed to a 75% wage reduction for three months two players left Mervan Celik and Gregg Wylde. The Rangers support and Ally McCoist had to put up with lie after lie from Administrators who many believe were in on the act with Craig Whyte to make as much money possible from the club.
After failed bids from Bill Miller, The Blue Knights, Brian Kennedy and Bill Ng, a Yorkshireman who had been hunted out from Sheffield United Charles Green came along and was given preferred bidder status by the administrators. Green claimed he had 20 Investors in his consortium and pushed for a CVA.
Rangers fans and players were left devastated when the news broke that the CVA was rejected as it meant the club were liquidated. That word just makes my blood boil, how can a club the size of Rangers, with our History and all its follow followers be liquidated ? The club still remain as a Newco but the troubles continue. Scottish Clubs have laid the boot into Rangers by voting No to them rejoining the SPL, fair enough if it were for the right reasons, but clubs want Rangers in division 1 so that they don't loose the money they make off the club.
Rangers fans are not looking for sympathy, we are not looking for special treatment. We are happy to take our punishment but it needs to be the same punishment that any other club would take. Its not down to Sporting Integrity, its down to how much money clubs loose without us. We have already been deducted points, banned from Europe for 3 seasons, Fined, and had a ban from signing players. What more do they want ?
It seems like Charles Green is working with Craig Whyte and Duff n Phelps and maybe Andrew Ellis is the one behind this cunning plan. One thing is for sure, the likes of Charles Green, Cemal Aydin and Melih Gokcek don't have the clubs interests at heart. They can burn in hell.
Hakan Kutlu and Ally McCoist we will stand shoulder to shoulder with you through these troubled times.