As longtime Rangers front office executive Dave King steps down this week as Chairman, the club like others around the Premiership are using this time without soccer to stay home, reflect and make changes.
The month of March has been a tough one for soccer fans globally, and for fans in Glasgow who just missed out on the fourth installment of the Glasgow Derby this season as all competition was canceled amid growing concerns of the COVID-19 pandemic.
But in foreign times nothing is certain, and that goes for the players on the pitch and for members of the club’s front office. This was on full display on Friday March 27th as longtime Rangers front office member and Chairman has stepped down after five years in charge of the club amid troubling times financially for one of the bigger clubs in Europe.
Dave King has been involved in multiple facets of the Rangers organization over the last two decades, after first joining the club’s board of directors back in March of 2000. He will leave having helped guided the club through a rough past decade financially, and after multiple rounds of personal investment will also leave with 25.58% of the clubs shares with no intentions to sell.
Though he initially planned to stay in his post through the end of the current health crisis, as of Friday March 27th, that doesn’t seem to be the case. As the Johannesburg based business tycoon has stepped down in reported efforts to tend to his business interests back in South Africa.
His replacement will be Deputy Chairman Douglas Park who will assume the position with an interim status through the current health crisis and until the board can elect a new Chairman at the next scheduled board meeting.
These are indeed interesting times to be taking on new roles regardless of which arena you find yourself doing so, but the Rangers need someone who is not only going to navigate them successfully through the COVID-19 crisis but also to a higher level of success after it.
The club reported an annual loss of 11.3 million pounds and that a new investment of at least 10 million pounds will be needed by the end of the season to avoid serious financial repercussions. The club has had reported interest from Far East businessman Stuart Gibson, who would look to pump somewhere in the in the neighborhood of twenty million pounds into the club. While Gibson has been seen at Rangers matches as of late, many speculate the deal will fall through given the current health crisis taking place globally, but King and the club have assured fans that these talks are quite advanced. And will ultimately bring some much needed capital into the club in the near future.
There is no doubt regarding what King has meant to this club over the last twenty years, but the Rangers need to look to the future with hopes of financial stability and it’s translation to success on the pitch. Though the club didn’t ultimately see King involved in that future and with his departure begin an era of change in a time away from soccer and to focus on business.