There is no club which throws up the window dressing better than the one at Ibrox. They are about to appoint Graeme Souness in some ill-defined “consultant” role and that would be hilarious enough, but he has confirmed the story on the radio today whilst making a startling claim; when they consulted him on who the manager should be he nominated someone other than the guy who got the job.
He thought it should have gone to Frank Lampard.
So they are about to hire a consultant whose view on the biggest issue facing their club they have already comprehensively rejected.
It sort of begs the question as to why they are bothering to hire him at all. If his judgement isn’t reckoned to be good enough on that subject then what exactly will he be “consulting” on? His transfer acumen?
We have Souness to thank for the collapse of Rangers, and it was his bad judgement in the transfer market which led directly to those events. If you’re unsure of what I mean by that, let me give you a little history, and it goes like this.
When he was manager of Blackburn, Rangers was paying him an EBT. Why? Nobody knows. He went to Newcastle a short time later, and one of the things he did there as manager was pay the Ibrox club £8 million for Jean Alain Boumsong, who Rangers had signed for nothing just months before. Newcastle had the chance to get him for free and had passed it up … and then Souness paid Rangers a massive transfer fee for him.
When the Stevens Inquiry was launched into dodgy football transfers it was one of the deals they were most interested in, and they raided Newcastle’s ground and Ibrox in the search for evidence in relation to that transfer.
They didn’t find proof that it was a dodgy bit of business, but they took away files, computers, and anything else that they thought might contain information on it. During the search they turned up evidence of Rangers’ EBT scam and they turned that evidence over to HMRC, and the rest, as they say, just like Rangers itself, is history.
So Souness’ transfer judgement is pretty flawed as well, as Newcastle fans will readily attest. He has a reputation for buying duds, and he’s not exactly “kept current” with global sporting trends.
He’s also a sexist, as his comments on women’s football demonstrate quite ably.
So a backward-looking creaking relic of football’s bygone era, whose judgement is already regarded by the club as highly suspect … being brought in as a consultant.
On what? On staunchness?
Is there anything he brings to the table that a top class manager wouldn’t?
What’s his record developing youth?
Will he be poking his nose into the manager’s affairs?
All these questions are valid. So too is the question about what would represent value for money from the club’s point of view.
Does putting this guy on a salary when really, nobody knows what it is he’ll be doing except acting as an ambassador – a dinosaur with controversial views and a penchant for talking down women; who better for the job? – make a blind bit of sense?
When you think of the men of integrity Celtic have as our club ambassadors and then see this … well it makes you laugh, doesn’t it?
It’s senseless, but that’s Ibrox’s way.