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Champions League


Uefa pushes ahead with plans to curb spending

Uefa is pushing ahead with plans backed by their president Michel Platini to curb spending by clubs, forcing them to break even and spend only what they earn.  When implemented over a three-year period up to and including 2015, they should benefit French and German clubs but hit those in England and Spain.

Tax exemption for footballers kicks off trouble

This year's Budget had attached to it a tax exemption from foreign-baxed footballers players in next year's Champions League final at Wembley.  Normally they would be required to fill in a tax form and be given a tax bill for everything that was judged 'relevant to the performance'.   However, the tax laws stopped Uefa giving the final to Wembley, hence the exemption.   But now other international sports stars such as tennis players and golfers are demanding an exemption as well which

Champions League Final Beats Super Bowl

The 2009 Champions League final beat the NFL's Super Bowl as the most-watched annual sports event in the world, according to a survey by futures sport + entertainment.

European match fixing scandal hits the beautiful game

At least 200 European football games are being investigated after police said they had dismantled an alleged international criminal ring suspected of running Europe's biggest ever match fixing scandal. German prosecutors and police stated that the gang allegedly obtained more than €10m in illegal betting proceeds by manipulating the outcomes of games in nine countries, including three in the Champions League. Peter Limacher of Uefa commented, 'This is without a doubt the biggest scandal to ever hit European football.' All the games under investigation took place this year.

Platini's Champions League Ultimatum

Uefa president Michael Platini has given Premiership clubs a three year ultimatum to clear up their debts or be booted out of the Champions League. Of course, other clubs such as Real Madrid could be affected as well, but there is no doubt that Platini's real target is English dominance of the Champions League. Under Platini's scheme clubs will have to break even on their football budgets, only spending what they earn from ticket sales, television rights, sponsorship and prize money.

Expatriate Football Players Dominate Champions League

Expatriate players dominated the 2008-9 season in the Champions League, according to data from Expatriates made up 55.9 per cent of all players, 2.1 per cent more than last season. They also played just under 60 per cent of all minutes played. The club that used the most expatriate players was Arsenal with 82.8 per cent in the squad and 92.7 per cent on the pitch. As in last season, the North London club was also the club with the youngest players, 22.7 years on average.

UEFA Denies Fair Play Tax is Attack on Premiership

Uefa have denied that their plans for a fair play tax are the latest shot in a campaign to undermine the English Premiership. Europe's richest football clubs, many of them in England, would have to pay a luxury tax on their star players that would be passed on to poorer clubs under plans being considered by Uefa. The tax idea is an attempt to redistribute wealth in a sport Uefa believes is heavily dominated by powerful teams such as Manchester United and Real Madrid.

Arsenal Can Cope With Loss Of Champions League Place

Arsenal's chances of an assured Champions League place appear to be dwindling, but chairman Peter Hill-Wood has reassured fans about the financial implications. He has insisted that there will be no impact on the mortgage payments on the club's £360m Emirates Stadium. The club, which made a £36.7m profit last season, need to sustain £20m a year repayments over 23 years to cover the £250m bonds issue which financed the project. Hill-Wood said, 'There is no denying that it would be a real financial drain on the club if we didn't qualify for the Champions League next season.

Smith Wants Rangers Out Of Scotland

Glasgow Rangers manager Walter Smith has revealed that the club would be prepared to field a 'B' team to fulfill their Scottish League obligations in order to bridge the gap with Europe's elite clubs. The Rangers manager has floated the idea of an updated version of the Atlantic League, an idea unsuccessfully advanced in the late 1990s by the continent's geographically handicapped. He foresees a new European league made up of the top sides in Holland, Belgium, Scandinavia and Scotland, running in parallel with the domestic divisions and providing entry to the Champions League.

Premiership Agrees To Debt Probe

Barclays Premier League officials have signed up to a voluntary investigation into debt levels among their clubs as part of their efforts to head off threats of regulation by Europe. Top clubs have been threatened with explusion from the Champions League as Uefa rails against the overwhelming success of Premiership clubs. Premier League officials are taking a leading role in a new Association of Professional Football Leagues (APFL) formed to represent the senior leagues in all 27 member states of the European Union.