Telegraph Sports Notebook - Rangers players free from blame

Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.
Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.
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Footballers get a bad press a lot of the time.

Often they deserve it, the sheltered existence they occupy seemingly creating an environment in which acceptable behaviour can be thrown out of the window, but in some cases they don’t.

And in the chaotic shambles that has passed for Glasgow Rangers FC in the past few months, their playing staff can be absolved of any blame.

But if Sandy Jardine - former player and club ambassador - is to be believed, the nine employees who have refused to have their contracts transferred to the new compnay that owns the club are nothing short of mercenaries.

“The players took a salary sacrifice (last season). But, for that, they got clauses in their contracts which would allow them to leave on rock bottom prices if clubs came in for them.

“I have to be honest and say I think the players have used our predicament to their gain.”

So John Fleck, Steven Davis, Allan McGregor, Kyle Lafferty, Jamie Ness, Steven Naismith, Steven Whitaker, Sone Aluso and Rhys McCabe, you should be ashamed of yourselves.

But hang on a minute Sandy, I think you’re speaking without really thinking here.

The fact the players want to leave the club may have something to do with the expected expulsion from the SPL.

It may be linked to the substantial wage cuts they took when the extent of the club’s financial woes became apparent.

It could be that they want to make the most of their careers while they have the chance.

And it may well have something to do with being sick and tired with all the nonsense they’ve had to put up with.

Why they should do right by the club when the club have hardly done right by them?

After all, it wasn’t the players who decided to not pay the club’s tax bill, it wasn’t the players who racked up a colossal debt and it wasn’t the players who pushed a once great footballing institution to the brink of extinction.

Footballers get a bad press a lot of the time.

This shouldn’t be one of them.