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Category: Finances

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Gordon Taylor is paid four times sum of benevolent grants to former players | David Conn

PFA chief executive was paid £2.29m last year while grants to those ill, infirm, in poverty or with mental conditions totalled £530,000The annual unveiling of the salary paid to Gordon Taylor has become a ritual of public bewilderment, a surfacing of d…

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No end to sobs on the Tyne as Newcastle yearn for a saviour | David Conn

Amanda Staveley’s failed bid to take over the club from Mike Ashley’s dispiriting regime has left supporters in despairThe aching resentment many Newcastle United supporters feel for the dispiriting culture under the club’s owner, Mike Ashley, was arti…

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Football transfers: how spending has escalated over the past three windows

The Guardian has collected data on every transfer in the top five European leagues since January 2017 – with clubs involved in moves worth more than £5bnIn January 2017 there were 547 transfers for a total value of £651m. Last summer Paris St-Germain b…

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Agents’ runaway gravy train set to be derailed in bid to curb excessive fees

The January transfer window has been a bonanza for agents but clubs and governing bodies are preparing to put a stop to itThe January transfer window closed with a blizzard of late moves, delivering £50m as the new normal fee for players – £142m for on…

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Worldwide websites and money, money, money: Uefa’s football trends | Paul MacInnes

Uefa’s report this week analysing trends in European football – from attendances to commercial revenues – made for interesting readingThe game ain’t what it used to be. Goalkeepers are wearing leggings, strikers are instagramming from private jets, def…

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Premier League has 14 of the 30 highest-earning clubs in the world

• Manchester United biggest earners in world football with £581m• Leicester City’s share of TV billions help puts them at No 14The Premier League makes so much more money from its multibillion-pound sales of television rights, tickets and commercial in…

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Amanda Staveley: the unusual case of Newcastle United’s would-be-owner | David Conn

The businesswoman is said to have £28bn under management but her UK company has no assets or employeesFor supporters of Newcastle United, the great, underperforming north-east football institution, the indignities of ownership under Mike Ashley have gr…

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Viktor Orbán’s reckless football obsession

The Hungarian prime minister has been lavishing public money on his favourite sport for years. Could it be his undoing? By David Goldblatt and Daniel NolanWith one main street and a couple of grocery shops, Felcsút looks like any other sleepy Hungarian…

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Said & Done: ‘There’s zero tolerance on doping. We always expect fair play’

The week in football – also featuring: Ivan Gazidis, Barça and a human moment Alexei Sorokin, Russia’s Fifa executive, on 2018 World Cup head Vitaly Mutko’s IOC life ban for “an unprecedented attack on the integrity of sport”: “It has no connection to …

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Manchester City announce record revenues for 2016-17 but wage bill soars

• Premier League leaders’ turnover reaches new high of £473.4m• Profit down to £1.1m as wage bill rises from £197.6m to £264.1mManchester City posted record revenues of £473.4m in the 2016-17 financial year, with profits down from £20.5m to £1.1m, thou…

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Arsenal shareholders send message to club’s board with protest votes at AGM

• Resolutions to re-elect Sir Chips Keswick and Josh Kroenke voted down• Stan Kroenke’s votes keep pair on board as Arsène Wenger addresses fansArsenal shareholders used the club’s annual general meeting on Thursday to voice their displeasure at the cu…

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Arsenal shareholders send message to club’s board with protest votes at AGM

• Resolutions to re-elect Sir Chips Keswick and Josh Kroenke voted down• Stan Kroenke’s votes keep pair on board as Arsène Wenger addresses fansArsenal shareholders used the club’s annual general meeting on Thursday to voice their displeasure at the cu…

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Newcastle United up for sale – but is Mike Ashley asking too high a price?

After 11 years the controversial owner wants out yet he is also seeking a profit of more than £100m for a Premier League club relegated twice during his tenureA guide to how swimmingly Mike Ashley’s sale of Newcastle United has been proceeding is that …

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Newcastle United investigated over ‘systemic abuse of tax system’

  • Court papers show extent of allegations against Premier League club
  • HMRC alleges Newcastle used ‘sham’ contracts when signing players

Newcastle United are under investigation over alleged “extensive” tax evasion on player transfers, court papers have shown.

Details of the allegations have emerged as the club failed in a legal challenge against search warrants issued to HM Revenue and Customs during Operation Loom, which saw dawn raids by HMRC on premises including St James’ Park as part of a £5m tax investigation involving Premier League and French clubs. The papers show HMRC investigators suspect Newcastle, owned by the billionaire Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley, of involvement in an elaborate scheme to evade income tax, VAT and national insurance.

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Facebook is not ruling out bidding for Premier League live matches

• The Premier League is a very important partner of ours, says Facebook chief • Major tech companies expected to join rights battle for 2019-2022

Facebook has refused to rule out entering the bidding to stream live Premier League matches following mounting speculation over a looming rights battle.

Ed Woodward, Manchester United’s vice-chairman, told investors in New York last week that Facebook and Amazon were interested in the last round of Premier League rights deals for 2016-19, which were sold primarily to BSkyB and BT for £8.4bn, and predicted that the tech companies will enter the next auction, which covers the 2019-22 period.

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Dulwich Hamlet to donate money from Isthmian League’s betting deal to charity

• League has agreed a sponsorship deal with Betting.net
• Dulwich Hamlet: ‘Our club does not support the betting industry’

Dulwich Hamlet have promised that any money the club receives from their league’s new sponsorship deal with a betting company will be donated to charities tackling gambling addiction.

Last month the Isthmian League, made up of clubs in the seventh and eighth tiers of English football in London and the south-east, agreed a deal with Betting.net to sponsor their performance of the month and fair play awards.

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Gianluca Vialli: ‘I look out for things that are going to make football a better game’

The former Chelsea striker and manager has cofounded a company that is looking to strengthen the ties between fans and clubs through crowdfunding

“We Italians need to feel like we’re under pressure, we need to see an enemy,” says Gianluca Vialli. “The pressure is a combination of expectation, scrutiny and consequences. That’s why we’re so good at managing, because we grew up experiencing pressure all the time. When Antonio came to England I think he almost felt it was easier but exciting at the same time.”

Vialli is well-placed to discuss the success of Antonio Conte (was he surprised when his old Juventus team-mate won the Premier League at the first time of asking? “No, no and no”). The former Chelsea manager, the first Italian to manage in the Premier League, had won everything in the club game by the time he moved to London in 1996. He became a star of the English game too, winning fans first with his pugnacious style of play, later with his urbane personality.

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Disillusioned Arsène Wenger calls for end to FFP in major U-turn

• Arsenal manager says rules on spending have become unenforceable
• Wenger suggests financial limits will put off Chinese and US investors

Arsène Wenger has lost faith in one of his guiding principles and called for financial fair play to be scrapped. The Arsenal manager says clubs have found a way to bluff around Uefa’s regulations and it has effectively rendered them unenforceable. He feels that if the Premier League is to “remain the best league in the world” the decision must be taken to revert to no financial limits.

Wenger reflected on a wild summer transfer window in which he suggested that Liverpool had most likely tapped up Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain before taking him from Arsenal for an initial £35m on 31 August. Four days earlier, the midfielder had played for Arsenal in the club’s 4-0 defeat at Anfield. Wenger said he did not know whether Liverpool had spoken to Oxlade-Chamberlain in the hours leading up to kick-off. He hoped they had not.

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PSG accused of ‘peeing in the pool’ on FFP rules over Neymar’s £200m move

• La Liga president Javier Tebas says French club ‘laughing’ at the FFP rules
• He adds that the Brazilian player ‘is peeing off the diving board’

The president of La Liga, Javier Tebas, has accused Paris Saint-Germain of “laughing” at football’s financial fair play rules. Referring to the French club’s £198m signing of Neymar from Barcelona, Tebas said: “We’ve caught [PSG] peeing in the swimming pool and Neymar is peeing off the diving board.”

The Spanish league president was speaking at the Soccerex Global Convention on Wednesday, two days after it emerged he had written to Uefa to ask for an investigation into what he described as PSG’s “history of non-compliance” with FFP. Tebas expanded on this at Soccerex, saying clubs backed by national gas and oil revenues were inflating costs for all clubs and destroying the industry.

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Supporters Direct lobbies for tougher ‘fit and proper people test’ for owners

• National fan roadshow kicks off on Tuesday in Blackpool
• Proposals a reaction to matters at Leyton Orient, Coventry and Blackpool

The Football Association should introduce a rule requiring owners of clubs to comply with “basic standards of good stewardship” or face a range of sanctions including fines or ultimately a ban, according to proposals by the campaigning organisation Supporters Direct.

Under the proposal, contained in detailed recommendations to be presented at a series of national fan events starting on Tuesday in Blackpool, owners would have a duty “to safeguard and protect the identity and existence of their club and to promote good relations, and a positive contribution, to the local community”.

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