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Rangers end contract with Jack Irvine's PR firm

Rangers FC have confirmed its contract with PR agency Media House International has ended.

A statement on the club's website today said: "Rangers Football Club and Media House International Ltd announce that by mutual consent their current business relationship will end on March 11th 2014."

Media House, run by former newspaper editor Jack Irvine, have been one of the most polarising elements in the Rangers hierarchy.

Only two weeks ago, a joint statement by the various official Ibrox fans' groups included the phrase: "before this board once again unleash their PR bulldog, Jack Irvine, whose only function appears to be to attack Rangers fans..."

Media House worked for Rangers under David Murray, Craig Whyte and Charles Green until their contract expired in 2012, but were hired again by the club last summer.

Jim Traynor, the former Herald and Daily Record sportswriter, was hired as director of communications in December 2012, but left last November as part of what was described as a cost-cutting package.

The club are still mired in financial uncertainty. Former Rangers director Dave King is due to fly in from South Africa soon and has said he won't leave Scotland until he comes up with a "definite game plan" for the future of the Ibrox club.

The South Africa-based businessman has urged supporters to withhold season-ticket money and hand it over to the club on a game-by-game basis.

The 58-year-old Glaswegian, who invested £20m in the club before it was consigned to liquidation in June 2012, made his plea to the fans after Rangers confirmed it had accepted £1.5million in loans from shareholders Sandy Easdale and Laxey Partners

King accepted an invitation to meet the Rangers board after an open letter from chairman David Somers claimed his "statements and innuendos" were "very damaging to the club" although he mocked the tone of the letter, saying he was being "summoned" to explain his comments.

Safe in the knowledge he has the backing by the influential Union of Fans coalition, King will first jet into London to meet with investors in the club before travelling to Glasgow where, aside from his showdown with the Ibrox board, he will also meet supporters to find a way forward for the Govan club.

"I will now meet the board as requested. I will visit the institutions in London next week and put a schedule together with some of the existing shareholders to understand where they are and how they would feel about a rights issue.

"Also, whether they would participate, whether they would give the rights to someone like me and I would like that out of the way before I meet the fans.

"Then I will stay up in Scotland for as long as it takes until we have a definite game plan as to how we will go forward from there."

Rangers' former finance director, Brian Stockbridge, claimed last October that the Ibrox club would only have around £1million of its cash reserves left by April but chief executive Graham Wallace has been at pains in recent weeks to deny there is a risk of a second administration.

King claims the Ibrox board were fully aware of their financial predicament when they refused his offer of help towards the end of last year.

He said: "I said then 'it's now early enough to anticipate you will not make the end of the year on your current cash balances and let's now try, and in an orderly fashion, go about a new fund-raising exercise'.

"I was happy to be a significant investor, in fact a leader of a consortium putting new funds into the club with the only condition that the funds went into the club.

"I wasn't interested in taking on existing shareholders and buying their shares out.

"I was looking for a new share issue and for those funds to go into the club and into the team and really all that's happened is they have adopted a 'Nero fiddling while Rome burns' approach where the inevitability of the next couple of months has come to pass.

"The board has done nothing, has not been transparent at all with regard to the finance and we now know as a matter of fact that the club has run out of funds and is trying to shuffle on in the hope that the fans will once again come to their rescue.

"They are looking for them to give enough money for season tickets so they can continue for another couple of months before again ending up in another financial crisis. That is what I am trying to avert at this point.

"The board has said my intentions are nothing other than damaging but in fact the opposite is true. The board should go to the fans and say 'this is the true state of the position at this club'."

King later clarified that he had offered to invest in Rangers in response to a brief statement by Easdale, which was read out on Sky Sports News.

The statement read: "Sandy Easdale refutes all claims that Dave King has made any offer of financial assistance to Rangers via him. These claims are wholly untrue."

In a statement King said: "I refer to Sandy Easdale's statement earlier today that I had never had discussions with him regarding putting new funds into the club.

"I subsequently engaged in private communication with Sandy and he has confirmed directly to me that he intended his comment to be construed as meaning that I had never offered loan finance to the club. He again confirmed that I had offered equity finance to the club when I met with him.

"Sandy is correct. I have only offered equity finance and I have stated repeatedly that I do not believe that the club can afford debt at this time. Shareholders should be backing the club with equity and not debt.

"I accept that Sandy's incorrect statement was merely a misunderstanding and that he was not intending to impugn my integrity."

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