French clubs to strike over ‘super tax’ row

Semiu Salami
Semiu Salami
A French team and threat of strike

French clubs will go on strike in November in protest at plans to impose higher taxes on players.

The government wants those earning an annual salary of more than 1m euros (£850,000) to pay a 75 per cent ‘super tax’.

Jean-Pierre Louvel, president of professional clubs’ union UCPF, said: “There will be a weekend without a game at the end of the month (November).”

The strike will affect matches in Ligue 1 and 2 – the top two divisions – from 29 November to 2 December.

Under the proposal, companies, rather than individuals, would be liable to pay the 75% tax rate for the part of employees’ annual salaries that exceed 1million euros.

Paris St-Germain, who are backed by Qatar investors, will be the hardest hit by the tax, but Monaco – funded by Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev – will be exempt as they do not fall under French tax laws.

The concern among clubs is that it will deter footballers from playing in France.

The issue will be debated in parliament, and French president Francois Hollande will meet representatives of the French clubs next week to discuss the issue.

Initial plans were for individuals earning more than 1million euros to pay the 75 per cent rate, but the government changed the proposals after protests by top French executives and actors such as Gerard Depardieu.

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