This message was sent with High importance
From: Sportseditor [MGN]
Sent: 24 November 2008 13:11
To: Sportsdesk, Clark, Matthew, Keevins, Hugh,
Parks, Gordon, Swan, Craig, Traynor, James
CC: Murray, Sir David; Bain; Martin
Subject: Transfer Window
I am sure that you do not need to be reminded that the Transfer Window is creeping ever closer. As such it is of vital importance that each and every one of you is fully aware of your responsibilities at this very important time.
Consequently I would like to take this opportunity to draw your immediate attention to the ‘Daily Record – Transfer Window Style Guide’.
This is a document you should all be very familiar with. However, due to recent revisions it is crucial that you re-familiarise yourself with the guide as a matter of urgency.
As you know the style guide sets out clear and definite instructions on the coverage of all stories regarding the Transfer Window and related issues. Under no circumstances should these be strayed from.
Any queries or questions regarding the content of the guide should not be addressed directly to Sir David or Mr Bain but rather raised in the first instance with myself. After that all further communication will be conducted via your union/legal representative.
Transfer Window – Style Guide
(1) Rangers FC do not ‘buy’ or ‘sign’ players. They ‘swoop’ for players. The extraordinary nature of these swoops must be emphasised at all times by preceding the word ‘swoop’ with at least one of the following choices - ‘sensational’ ‘stunning’ ‘exciting’ ‘audacious’ or ‘ambitious’.
(2) Celtic FC do not ‘buy’ or ‘sign’ players. They ‘finally complete’ deals. The hugely dull nature of this event should be emphasised at all times by using at least one of the following terms - ‘protracted’ ‘long-running’ and ‘drawn out affair’.
(3) Any overseas transfer target of Rangers FC is, without fail, also being pursued ”…by a host of Europe’s top clubs”.
(4) Rangers FC must then be referred to as “battling it out for the signature…” of this ‘hot property’ and ‘wanted man’.
(5) The exact identity of these elite club’s will be selected on a random basis but must contain at least one of the current top 4 sides in Italy, Germany and Spain. One of these may be substituted by Lyon but no other French club.
(6) If the said player signs for Rangers FC then the club have “pulled off a sensational coup”. To avoid unnecessary confusion under no circumstances should the player be asked why he turned down these previously reported top clubs. Instead the player will “modestly refuse to comment on the speculation”.
(7) Any overseas player purchased by Rangers FC under the age of 21 years is a ‘wonder kid’.
(8) Any overseas player purchased by Celtic FC under the age of 21 years is an ‘unknown youngster’.
(9) In recognition of the club’s international stature it is appropriate that the transfer fees received and paid by Rangers FC should initially be quoted in Euros. After this initial use the term of currency quoted should be dropped and thereafter, whenever possible, the figure referred to only by approximate amount.
(10) Should Rangers FC purchase a Scottish player from a domestic rival then this story must be accompanied by a double page spread praising the club’s willingness to invest in home-grown talent and how this is of the benefit to the national side and indeed the country as a whole.*
(11) Should Celtic FC purchase a Scottish player from a domestic rival then this story must be accompanied by a double page spread condemning the club’s willingness to rape rivals of home-grown talent and how this is to the detriment of the national side and indeed the country as a whole.*
*Billy Brown and Jim Jeffries are again willing to contribute. However, please note due to current financial constraints within the company the expenses department has placed a limit of four fish suppers per contributor
(12) Any player linked with Rangers FC who has not made a strongly worded denial of the said move should be referred to issuing “…a come and get me plea.”
(13) Clubs unwilling to lower their asking price to meet the perfectly acceptable bid placed by Rangers FC must be strongly condemned. All stories of this nature must include the words/terms “staggering asking price” “inflated fee” “outrageous demands” and “holding to ransom”. The player involved in this deal must be referred to as “the want away star’ and it is imperative that any story fully informs the reader how the immoral stance of the selling club could “jeopardise a dream move to Ibrox” for a player “whose heart is set on a switch to Glasgow”.
(14) Clubs unwilling to up their bid to meet the perfectly reasonable fee placed on a player by Rangers FC must be strongly condemned. All stories of this nature must include the words/terms “insulting” “laughably derisory bid” “on the cheap” “deliberate attempt to unsettle” and “outrageously low offer”.
(15) The signing of an overseas player by Rangers FC must be accompanied by a two page spread stating how they will become as good as their nation’s most famous footballer. For example: Rangers’ Romanian new boy was last night tipped to be the man who could finally fill the boots of Gheorghe Hagi. Mark Hately is willing to contribute to this article.
(16) The signing of an overseas player by Celtic FC must be accompanied by a two page spread questioning whether they are good enough for the SPL. Gordon Smith is willing to contribute to this article.
(17) If Rangers FC sign a player who has – at any point of their career - been watched by any member of the Celtic Park staff (including Superstore employees, programme sellers and outsourced catering workers) then they will have “…sensationally snatched” the said player “..from under the nose of the Parkhead club”.
(18) If Celtic FC sign a player who we previously linked with Rangers FC then it will be because “After initial tentative interest Rangers decided to pull out of the chase” thus “…leaving the road clear for Celtic”. The player in question “..represented poor value for money..” and was “…no better than the players already available to the Rangers boss.”
(19) The fact that Sir David Murray owns a private jet and a vineyard in the south of France are integral elements of any Rangers transfer story and failure to recognise this will see copy spiked.
(20) Finally, as in previous years our colleague at the Sunday Mail will again be organising ‘Operation Moonbeams’ which is as usual planned for the first weekend in February. Our duty is to ensure quality follow-up coverage. While details of the current operation are being finalised you are advised to familiarise yourself with Glasgow City Council’s Draft Regeneration Project for Govan and NASA’s proposed manned mission to Mars.