Spanish football is known for its many stars and exciting matches between famous clubs. Barcelona and Real Madrid in particular play a significant part in the world of football, they are arguably two of the most well-known teams in the world! However even among all this stardom, there is one recent issue that smears a black mark over Spanish Football. Tax fraud.
Barcelona FC, one of world’s top football clubs, have been dealing with cases of tax fraud regarding their star players.
The issue first arose in 2013, with Lionel Messi, arguably the worlds best player, being charged with tax fraud of more that 4 million euros. Less than a year later, another Barcelona superstar Neymar, was transferred to the Spanish club from Brazil. This sparked another tax fraud investigation, this time into the club regarding the fees for Neymar. Another year later there has been another Barcelona star facing tax fraud charges! This time being Javier Mascherano.
With the amount of players within the world of football, it is not surprising that there will be crimes or allegations towards players, but 3 major cases in 2 years for a single club is quite unheard of!! Not only this, but these allegations involve one of the worlds leading football clubs, a team watched by millions around the world and their players known all over the globe.
Players like Messi and Neymar are role models for young people growing up, they see their achievements and aspire to be like them. Children are inspired by these players, and yet they let down the world by not doing a simple, responsible thing; paying your taxes. They let this tarnish their reputation. Whatever happened to spanish pride?
The issue itself is much more complex than I can possibly explore within one blog post, and the tax fraud issue may be less about the player and more about the club itself. Yet in the end it is difficult to know what happens behind closed doors and how footballers really manage their money and taxes…