Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughCraig Whyte – A Fit and Proper Person? - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Craig Whyte – A Fit and Proper Person? - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Craig Whyte – A Fit and Proper Person?

The news that the SFA are investigating Craig Whyte to determine if he meets their fit and proper person guidelines doesn’t really come as a surprise to anyone that’s followed events at Ibrox since he took the reigns of the club.

Previous to this Craig Whyte had released a statement confirming that he had in the past been banned from being a Director of one of his former companies: Vital UK Ltd. The sanctions ran for a period of 7 years beginning in 2000.

There seems a certain infatuation with Mr Whyte’s previous dealings and the problems surrounding the club certainly make for some trouble-stirring headlines. Some days it seems like there is nothing quite as news worthy as the plight of Rangers Football Club.

But it’s hard not to feel sorry for the tousle haired Venture Capitalist. He has had to deal with sniping from previous Ibrox board members, claims that the bank forced through his particular deal amid threats of the credit line being removed and other news outlets claiming acts of criminality in his past.

I’m guessing that in the world of business there is many a man who’s past maybe has a blemish or two. All that is fair to judge Mr Whyte on from a fans perspective is his running of the club. He has undertaken sorting the club out, an almighty task and he deserves praise for it. Investment in the squad, stadium upgrades and contract renewals for the top players amounts to a sizeable outlay in the current climate.

Scottish football is at death’s door, each knock louder than the last and it is a certainly a bold move to take the keys of the club.

There are areas though for some concern which arise from the differing messages that come out of Ibrox. There was such furore in Mr Whyte’s response to the BBC’s investigation that this admission has left him looking a tad foolish.

Within the BBC program there was 2 claims: 1st, the criminal findings in his previous dealings and 2nd, he had been sanctioned from being a Director in the past. Such was his apparent anger at it all that he set his legal team the task of making a case against them. But do you not think that at this point he should have made clear that he had in fact been banned? To hold his hands up and say that this was true? He could have even spun it as these things happen in business, things go against you, you move on. I’m sure it would have been bought. He has admitted himself that he has been taken aback at the scrutiny that surrounds his job and the club, but he certainly could make things easier on himself if he disclosed such things before they appeared in other places and he was forced to respond.

The SFA have apparently been after the club for weeks for a response to their questions surrounding the guidelines. Is the non-response down to poor organisation? A disrespect for the authority that runs the game? Or, was he hoping that this would disappear if he kept schtum…wrong club and wrong country for such wishes.

It is hard to know where all this will end for the club and Mr Whyte. The words used by him and his team in regards to the future have got ominously darker as time has passed, a winter of discontent could be on its way. I feel he has been caught out of his depth with regard to the intense interest that surrounds the club off the park, and for this I am sympathetic. He’s on some learning curve…

But for a club that doesn’t have their troubles to seek, Craig Whyte should maybe be a little more proactive in shaping the image of the club in the media.

By the way, I wonder how many of those that are charged with running our game would pass a fit and proper person test? But that’s another issue.

Niall Miller

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