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Rangers crisis sparks fans' protests

Rangers started coming to terms with life under administration after being docked 10 points by the Scottish Premier League. The club’s debts to the tax authorities have no immediate solution, and the first team players face uncertain futures.

The last thing they needed was a home defeat to Kilmarnock. Rangers lost the game 1-0 in an atmosphere of raucous protest against those the fans identified as responsible for the club’s financial plight.

There was an attendance of over 50,000 for the match, with thousands protesting outside the ground before kick-off. The targets of the fans’ anger included current owner Craig Whyte, previous owner David Murray, and former chief executive Martin Bain.

Questions are being asked about owner Whyte’s financial dealings since taking control at Ibrox, including his decision to mortgage future season-ticket sales. Whyte has insisted he is not responsible for the crisis. He stayed away from Ibrox but had issued a statement:

"In spite of the endless speculation and attempts at character assassination by certain sections of the media, I am 100% confident that the administrators' report will prove that every penny that has come in and gone out of Rangers has been properly accounted for.

"I wish to state categorically for the record now that I personally have not taken a single penny out of Rangers since I became chairman and have paid all my expenses from my own funds."

The defeat, and the points deduction, leaves Rangers all but out of the title race. Unless they can resolve their debts quickly, they could be out of contention for years to come, if not out of business completely.

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