Deloitte to investigate themselves at Ibrox?

Last updated : 22 April 2013 By Mark Dingwall

I also struggle to comprehend why others can’t compute the blindingly obvious.

At Ibrox for the past two weeks boardroom unrest has been boiling - one one side Chairman Malky and Walter versus Charles Green and associates on the other. With Mr Green’s resignation, one side, in its current incarnation at least, is fatally weakened.

Whether or not a ‘master and servant’ relationship exists between Craig Whyte and persons unknown remains to be proved. Personally I doubt it - I think Whyte was simply bested in a deal gone wrong by people smarter than him. However, those issues are now under investigation by both the police and the liquidators BDO who have the powers necessary to get to the bottom of things.

Which brings us to the third investigation.

Last Saturday the RFC Board announced they would commission an independent examination of the central claims of Craig Whyte - essentially that Whyte, Green and others were secretly partners in a scam to buy and control the club.

Significantly, the statement said this examination was agreed jointly and unanimously by all the directors but that the report would be considered only by the non-executive directors: In short, Charles Green and Brian Stockbridge would be judged by the others.

It looks to me as if the floating of Deloitte as the investigating firm is a sop to the Green camp in order to break the 3-3 deadlock - Deloitte advised Mr Green on the purchase of Rangers. In return for accepting the bad medicine they insisted on a company they could trust to head the investigation.

Yet in that solution there is the seed of another problem. If you aren’t minded to trust in Green then having the transaction to purchase the club investigated by the firm which advised on it is never going to put your mind at rest.

We can have plenty of talk about Chinese walls and integrity within Deloitte - and it is a large and very reputable company - but these words count for nothing in the world of football fandom: fans simply won’t trust the verdict if they are pre-disposed to disbelieve.

The senior partner at Deloitte who advised Mr Green is Sean Beech.   He has 720 employees under him in the North West, centered on Liverpool. If someone wants to try and sell the idea that an investigation by Deloitte into one of their own clients advised by a powerful figure like Mr Beech will leave no stone unturned then I wish them the best of luck.

Such an investigation needs to be headed by someone who is completely lacking in ties to those under investigation. Deloitte just won’t do.