EXCLUSIVE: James Traynor to swap Daily Record for Rangers Football Club


Scotzine exclusively revealed through our twitter page yesterday, that the outgoing journalist James Traynor is swapping life at One Central Quay for a lucrative position working for Charles Green’s Rangers Football Club as their new Head of Communications.

Our source informed us yesterday morning that Traynor is set to start at Ibrox in the ‘next few weeks’ on a ‘large salary as Head of Communications of the Third Division side.

In his last article for the Daily Record, Traynor signed off in style – well in two styles. Lauding the good and the great of the Sporting world in part one, but in part two Traynor spat his dummy and threw his toys out of the pram as he rounded on all those who had the gall to comment on the Rangers tax issue and those who passed judgement or published what could happen if Rangers saw the verdict go against them.

It’s somewhat coincidental that at the time the FTT verdict is published, Traynor publishes articles in opposition to those who reported on the FTT, the possible outcomes and how it all affected Rangers Football Club – all the while he was applying for the Rangers position, speaking to Charles Green about taking payment from his consortium as an employee of the club.

Would you write an article attacking your new employers? It would be madness to do so now wouldn’t it? Is Traynor’s conscience really clear?

He stated in his column’s obituary piece that his ‘conscience won’t allow me to stay in our profession’ – I guess the large pay deal helped his conscience to switch from the offices at Central Quay for the marble staircase at Ibrox. Of course he may not have his name on the byline of articles from now on, but will he be the new feeder of the succulent lamb brigade. Feeding them with the morsels of news that they live off and claim them as exclusives?

In essence his article was merely an outlet for him, as Roy Greenslade of the Guardian stated, to show ‘the traditional print journalist’s disdain for the growing influence of online journalism’.

He labelled this online community as ‘despicable, pathetic little creatures craving some kind of recognition but lacking in conscience and morality’. I wonder has he met any of them? I have certainly had the ‘pleasure’ of being in the same company as Traynor and to state that he walks around with this ‘aura’ of how great he is, is an understatement to say the least.

And it is a pity that he left out the part where he rode on the coat tails of those who he was now attacking. The information that he used to publish articles throughout the financial crisis at Rangers was published first and foremost by these ‘anonymous bloggers’ and internet bampots he now attacks, followed up by articles written by a small band of mainstream journalists who had enough of lamb on the menu and decided to get stuck into the juicy Rangers financial story instead, than feed on what was being cut up and hand fed to them by the likes of Sir David Murray and Craig Whyte – who acted as the dotting parents while the likes of Traynor and his small band of journalists acted like hungry babies with open mouths begging for the tiniest morsel. In fact the tiniest morsel of succulent lamb is more mouth-watering than having to work for that morsel.

As I stated in a previous article, hindsight is a wondrous thing and Traynor has mountains of articles based on hindsight.

Traynor signed off his obituary with the comment: “The kind of journalism needed by the country, never mind sport, no longer exists in enough of the media outlets. Good luck to you – and be careful about what and who you read in the future.”

I’m sorry but in his 37 years of being a journalist, our source stated that when ‘he was number 3 at the Herald in the 1980s he was a great writer’, but he then ‘went downhill and became pompous’.

The Lord Leveson report published a fact which has the newspaper industry quaking in its shoes – in a ten-year period between 2002 and 2012, the likes of the Scottish Sun and Daily Record/Sunday Mail saw a fall of around 50% in their circulation. This cannot be attributed to these internet bampots, the rise of the internet yes, but also comes down to the articles within the newspapers also and effectively how out of date they are when published. So Traynor’s stint at the Daily Record saw Scotland’s daily newspaper lose ground and then being overtaken by Rupert Murdoch’s Scottish Sun.

Now you don’t get to being the Sports editor of a national newspaper for being a churnalist, Traynor has done some great work, but since his demotion as executive sports editor to a mere sports writer, Traynor’s work has seen much bitterness ooze throughout his work.

It is somewhat convenient also that at the time that Bruce Waddell departed the Record and Allan Rennie came in as Editor-in-chief, promoting Austin Barrett to Sports editor, that the unemployed, unemployable and suspended NUJ member David Leggat launched venemous attacks on Rennie.

Even today just 24 hours after Traynor departed One Central Quay, Leggat stated: “Peter Lawwell is set to effectively become the new editor-in-chief of the Daily Record and Sunday Mail.”

Why? Well according to Leggat ‘a grubby commercial deal which will see the Daily Record and Sunday Mail sign up to take money from Celtic to do all of Celtic’s printing. And the man at the Daily Record and Sunday Mail who will now be forced to do just whatever Peter Lawwell tells him to do, yet who will masquerade under the title of editor-in-chief, while the real power lies with Peter Lawwell, is the cowardly Alan Rennie. Any editor, indeed any man, worth his salt would have told any management which tried to impose such restrictions on his journalistic freedom, where to stick their job and walked away’.

A bit like why James Traynor did? funny how often David Leggat speaks out in favour of James Traynor and against the likes of Rennie and some others in the Record. Now why is that? Is Traynor the organ grinder and Leggat his wee organ monkey? It certainly sounds like it.

Someone should tell Mr Leggat that the Daily Record and Sunday Mail do not control the printing, Trinity Mirror does. And if any deal is on the table or due to be signed then it is with Trinity Mirror and not the newspapers. A bit like how STV secured a commercial deal with Rangers last year.

Leggat added: “Just as Jim Traynor told us all, in his last column for the paper whose coffin he has publicly driven a nail into, he did, in the wake of him discovering just what was going on behind his back. Dark deeds and a commercial tie in for profit between Peter Lawwell and Celtic and the Daily Record and the Sunday Mail, which the powerbrokers inside Ibrox first got wind of last week.”

Given the stance of Traynor’s articles of late, since the verdict of the First Tier Tribunal was published, then there must surely be questions over his objectivity and a conflict of interest over the articles he has written about a club he is set to become an employee of. When speaking to a colleague over Mr Traynor’s new role, a comment was posed to me – were his recent articles merely his application for his new position at Ibrox? Only Charles Green and James Traynor would know that.

It is somewhat laughable the day after Traynor’s piece that his good friend Hugh Keevins, took charge of the Sports hotline and 99% of that was on Traynor leaving the newspaper.

One Dougie Clemenson from Bellshill claimed that: “Record Sport is losing the Lionel Messi of football reporters.”

I’ve never been good at anagrams, but is Dougie Clemenson an anagram of ‘are you taking the piss?’


About Author


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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