AFTERNOON DECISION ON GERS TRANSFERS
A judge will issue a decision on Rangers' court bid to quash a transfer embargo at 3.30pm today.
Lord Glennie is considering competing arguments made on behalf of the club and the Scottish Football Association following a three-hour hearing at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.
Rangers argue the decision was unlawful as it was not available to the SFA panel that imposed it, but the governing body disputes this and also called into question whether the court had jurisdiction over the matter.
Lord Glennie's first decision is whether his court has the right to make a judgement on the club's application for a judicial review after the SFA's QC, Aidan O'Neill, challenged that with a plea of jurisdiction.
The SFA argued that Rangers should have taken their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the conventional arena for sporting disputes, but the club say the SFA rules do not allow for or explicitly insist an appeal should go to the Swiss court.
If the judge throws out that claim from the Hampden-based organisation, he will have to decide whether the SFA panels acted within their rules in handing down the punishment, specifically a 12-month ban on registering players aged 18 and over.
Rangers claim the SFA acted unlawfully as the punishment - imposed for a disrepute charge mainly passed down over the club's failure to pay more than £13million in tax last season - was not explicitly laid down under the specific rule breach.
The SFA argue that another clause permitted the panel to impose any punishment it deemed appropriate and that the stated punishments were the maximum allowed and not the exclusive sanctions open to the tribunal.
If Rangers win both those arguments, then the judge must decide whether the decision goes back to the judicial panel that made the initial decision or the appeal tribunal that later upheld it.
He has already made it clear he will not suspend the punishment and therefore close the matter entirely, as requested by Rangers through Richard Keen QC.
That could mean one or even two new hearings where the punishments must come from the list laid down under rule 66 in the SFA's judicial panel protocol.
Having also been fined the maximum £100,000 for the disrepute charge, the additional sanctions are suspension or expulsion from participation in the game, ejection from the Scottish Cup or termination of membership.
Even if Rangers succeed in their bid to get the registration ban annulled, they are already subject to a Scottish Premier League transfer embargo because they are in administration.
That would be automatically lifted when they come out of administration but the earliest date that can happen is July 12 after a Company Voluntary Arrangement proposal was published on Tuesday ahead of a creditors' meeting on June 14.
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