With all the furore around bankers' pay; people have ignored footballers wages. Did you even know that footballers wages when printed in the press are always quoted post-tax? Yes that £150,000 a week John Terry earns is in fact nearly 40% in real money. (2 years ago Labour whined about this, they seem strangely reticent today?)
To the point though, the Premier Leagues had its deadline day fro transfers yesterday and very quiet it was too. Only Manchester City, backed by Oil billions, have spent this summer. Without them, the spending would be nearly 50% down on last year. All the top players are leaving Man Utd and Liverpool and heading for Spain.
Why Spain? Well it often takes an outsider to show a country's folly. Arsene Wenger in this case, an economic graduate, says that in Spain a footballer can pay tax at 25% for 5 years. That is longer than the average contract. They are paid in Euro's too which has been appreciating against the Pound for nearly 2 years now.
The combination of a sickly Pound and impending 50% tax on the rich means that in real money terms, Spanish clubs can pay 70% less to give players the same wages.
Premier League football will be unable to remain the dominant force in Europe when placed at such a disadvantage. German clubs are competing now too. And whilst you may not care much about that, there is a read across to all of our other industries where people are mobile too. In the City it is Hedge Funds, but you can also add IT Contractors and even perhaps Lorry drivers and a myriad of other professions into the mix. High taxes and a weak currency are going to ruin our economy and sadly that is the path the Government is taking us on.