Friday 23 February 2018

French clubs to go on strike over 'super tax'

Paris Saint-Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be among the players going on strike
Paris Saint-Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be among the players going on strike

Clubs in Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 are to go on strike for one weekend next month in protest at the French government's plans for a new 'super tax'.

The nation's Professional Clubs' Union (UCPF) announced on Thursday there would be no matches staged on the weekend of November 29-December 2.

"There will be a weekend without games," said UCPF president Jean-Pierre Louvel.

Under the proposal, companies, rather than individuals, will be liable to pay the 75 per cent tax rate for the part of employees' annual salaries that exceed one million euros.

The issue is to be discussed in parliament, but the fear among clubs is that it will dissuade players from playing their football in France and they will instead seek employment elsewhere.

"I agree with the determination of the French clubs," added Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) president Frederic Thiriez in remarks reported by L'Equipe.

The clubs had initially hoped they would be exempt, but sports minister Valerie Fourneyron confirmed last month that that would not be the case.

A statement on the official LFP website added: "This day "football in danger, all together!" is unprecedented in the history of French football, as a first initiative from football to protest against the introduction of exceptional tax on high salaries paid by employees under the draft budget law for 2014.

"This tax is unfair and discriminatory.

"The economic crisis has not spared the clubs who have had their ticket sales and television rights decrease for three consecutive years."

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