The administrators have said that Whyte’s view on exiting administration before the deadline was ‘optimistic’.
The four reasons given by the administrators were:
- The likelihood of being able to emerge successfully from administration before the deadline, as indicated by Whyte was, at best optimistic given the financial situation at the club.
- The company accounts cannot be signed off by auditors in a manner that would meet the criteria required by the footballing authorities as the club would have to satisfy a going concern test confirming how it will continue to be funded until the end of next season. Given that the administrator does not know who will be the owner of the club by 31 March, this cannot be reasonably guaranteed.
- Under Uefa regulations, Rangers must have paid or settled all tax debts outstanding at 31 December 2011, which are estimated to be at least £5m – another guarantee the administrator cannot fulfil.
- The club must have paid or compromised all of its outstanding creditors prior to the deadline of 31 March, which is also unlikely.
The statement continued: “As administrators, we will make every effort to seek dispensation from the footballing authorities given the extraordinary circumstances in which the club has been placed.
“There has, perhaps inevitably, been speculation about Rangers facing liquidation. As we have stated previously, we remain very confident that Rangers will not cease to exist and the team will continue to play at Ibrox.
“If a Company Voluntary Arrangement is not possible for any particular reason, any buyer of the club and its assets would complete that purchase through a sale by the administrators, allowing the club to continue to operate with the old company then being placed into liquidation prior to dissolution.
“We are, however, doing our best to ensure the company trades viably during administration and this will require a rigorous cost-cutting programme. Our preferred option remains to reach a point where a Company Voluntary Arrangement is reached and the club can emerge from administration as a viable business within its existing corporate shell.
“As stated, there is a possibility that if a new buyer is identified a financial case may be made to sell the business and assets of the old company, but that is not our preferred approach at this time.”
Rangers’ last match in European competition was the 3-2 aggregate defeat to Maribor on 25 August in a Europa League qualifier at Ibrox.
If the club do go into liquidation – as Rangers non-executive director Dave King intimated – and a NEWCO is formed, even if Rangers manage to secure their path back into the Scottish Premier League, the Ibrox side would be blocked from playing in Europe for three years as part of the sanctions that would be imposed on the club.
Therefore barring a total capitulation, Stuart McCall’s Motherwell side will be hosting Champions League qualifiers at Fir Park, while everyone linked with Rangers Football Club will get their dose of European Football from the coverage on council telly.