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IN FULL: Steven Naismith and Steven Whittaker statements after Rangers departure

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[media-credit name=”© Vagelis Georgariou” align=”aligncenter” width=”590″][/media-credit]

Steven Naismith statement:

“I have discussed this decision with my fiancée, my family and my advisors. It has been an extremely difficult decision to make but I believe it is the right decision.

“As players we were put in a difficult position by the administrators whereby we were asked to take a 75% pay cut to contracts that we entered into in good faith. As players we collectively saw this as the only way to get Rangers Football Club out of administration by way of a CVA and thereby protect the staff jobs and the history of the club and give the creditors who had also entered into contracts with Rangers in good faith the best chance of being paid.

“Both Steven and I and our agent fought hard with administrators during negotiations to insert clauses that offered protection to staff and players at the club. I am extremely proud of the actions we took but I am disappointed and angry that Rangers Football Club no longer exists in its original form.

“I am proud that the result of the squad’s decision to take a 75% pay cut for 3 months was successful in our aim of protecting the players and staff at Ibrox and Murray Park’s conditions that has resulted in the opportunity for each member of staff to TUPE over or not to the new entity keeping their original pay and conditions.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Walter Smith, Ally McCoist, Kenny McDowall Ian Durrant, Jim Stewart and the rest of the backroom and medical staff and everyone that works at Ibrox and Murray Park for their support during my time at the Club. I am proud of the success we achieved during my time including three SPL titles, a Scottish Cup and two Scottish League Cups.

“Finally I would like to thank the fans for all their backing. Everyone knows I am a life-long Rangers supporter and so I share in the disappointment and anger of what has happened to the great Rangers Football Club.

“I hope that a successful new Rangers can emerge and wish everyone connected with the new Club, including Mr Green and his consortium, the very best for the future.”

Steven Whittaker statement

“It has been really difficult time for all connected with Rangers Football Club. And this has been such a difficult decision to make. I have discussed it at great length with my wife, family and advisors and believe I have made the right decision to object to joining Sevco.

“I am extremely proud to have played a part in the success during my time at the Club including winning leagues and cup titles and a Europa League final appearance. It has been a pleasure to work with Walter Smith, Ally McCoist, Kenny McDowall, Ian Durrant, Jim Stewart and the rest of the backroom staff, especially the medical team and all the staff at Ibrox and Murray Park.

“I will always have a great deal of affection for the supporters who have shown me great respect throughout my time at Ibrox, I will always be grateful for the support they have given me as a Rangers player.

“I am, like Steven Naismith, proud of the players for taking a 75% pay cut, arguably against our own commercial interests. I believe we did the right thing as we could have refused which could have brought about liquidation earlier and/or resulted in significant redundancies.

“I am glad that the staff have the opportunity to TUPE over or not and that if they choose to their conditions are protected.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank all the staff, the players and especially the supporters. Whatever form the new club takes, I wish everyone connected with it the very best for the future.”

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About Author

scotzine

Andy Muirhead is the Editor of Scotzine and the Scottish Football fanzine FITBA. He is the Scottish Football columnist for The Morning Star and has written for a number of other publications including ESPN, Huffington Post UK, BT Life's a Pitch and has had his work featured in the Daily Record, The Scotsman and the Daily Mail.

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