RANGERS DELAY ANNOUNCEMENT

Rangers administrators will not name a preferred bidder for the club on Monday.

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Rangers: Yet to name a preferred bidder

Rangers: Yet to name a preferred bidder

Rangers' administrators have appealed to frustrated fans for more patience after admitting the two potential bidders for the Ibrox club have still have not made an offer "capable of acceptance".

Duff and Phelps said on Friday that they would look to proceed with American businessman Bill Miller's £11.2million bid on Monday, if no other offers were forthcoming.

However, the Blue Knights, led by former director Paul Murray, returned to the table over the weekend and both bidders have been given more time to clarify a number of issues, although, in keeping with the chaotic nature of the saga, there was confusion over whether Miller had asked for it.

David Whitehouse, of Duff and Phelps, claimed neither bid involved liquidation - the nightmare scenario for Rangers fans -

but moved to explain another broken deadline in the hope of quelling growing unrest among the supporters.

In a statement released on Monday afternoon he said: "We have continued intensive discussions with interested parties over the weekend.

"The Blue Knights and Bill Miller have asked for a further short period of time to finalise their plans for the club prior to any announcement on a preferred bidder.

"At this stage neither party has currently made an offer that is capable of acceptance by the administrators and we can only move forward when we have an offer on the table that can be concluded following a period of final due diligence.

"In broad terms, the Blue Knights are trying to resolve issues regarding the structure of their proposed funding partnership with Ticketus as well as conducting further analysis of player contracts.

"The proposed bid from Mr Bill Miller is, as he made clear on Friday, subject to specific conditions.

"Both bidders have raised with us their strong desire to attain greater clarity on potential footballing sanctions the club may face and these remain issues to be resolved.

"We believe that both bidding parties have the best interests of the club in mind and, frustrating though it is for fans, it is better that these complex issues are addressed now rather than later.

"It is imperative that whichever offer is taken forward can be delivered. For the avoidance of doubt, neither bid involves liquidation."

Miller released a statement later confirming that, in the meantime, he would be ploughing on with his bid.

He said: "After speaking with the administrators today, I understand that no other bidders have stepped up to offer to save Rangers.

"As I stated on Friday, if there were no other bids by close of business Monday, I would begin the process to acquire Rangers according to the plan I outlined on Friday.

"To clarify earlier statements in the press, I did not ask for more time to move forward.

"However, at the request of the administrators, I will wait to enter into exclusivity in order to give the Blue Knights/Ticketus more time to put an alternative offer on the table for the administrators to evaluate.

"I will leave it to Duff and Phelps to determine when they want to identify their preferred bidder.

"Until then, I am moving forward with my process and continuing my discussions with all related parties.

"I can confirm that I did have confidential conversations with the SFA and PFA Scotland representatives.

"Finally, I will be having discussions with Ally McCoist later to discuss his recommendations regarding the players."

The desire for calm permeated the rhetoric today with Murray saying in the earlier statement: "Frustrating though this is for everyone with the interests of the club at heart, the Blue Knights are supportive of the administration process and we think it is right the administrators are giving parties left in the race the opportunity to finalise their plans."

Manager McCoist pleaded with fans to show patience.

"I would ask our fans to stick with us for a few more days as we should have a clearer idea of where we are," he said.

Andy Kerr, president of the Rangers Supporters Assembly, added: "Our fans are frustrated by the further delay but hopefully the issues can be resolved in the next few days.

"It would be helpful if supporters allow Duff and Phelps to get on with their work at this crucial time."

Nevertheless, this latest delay will only increase concern among the Rangers fans who believed today was D-day with regards a preferred bidder being named for the club who have been in administration since February 14.

Miller's bid is dependent on receiving written assurances from the football authorities that a new Rangers would not be punished next season.

The Scottish Premier League clubs are due to vote on April 30 on proposals that would see 'newco' clubs deducted money and points for several seasons.

Whitehouse alluded to those complications further in his statement.

"Because of what has happened at Rangers, the football authorities too have a difficult task as there are many unprecedented issues to deal with," he said.

"This is a complicated administration due to recent and historical events at Ibrox and while everyone wants to see a solution brought about quickly there is a need to grasp the reality of the situation.

"In terms of timing, we believe that should an unconditional bid be made that would meet creditors' approval and a CVA process could begin, the club could emerge from administration within a period of two months and certainly prior to the commencement of next season.

"If we proceed with an offer that is based on a sale of the business and assets, then we would expect the Football Club share to be transferred within a matter of weeks, with a preference of prior to the end of the current season."

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