NYON: European federation president Michel Platini has warned French league clubs that a one-weekend strike against the government’s super-tax will not go down well with the public.

The clubs of the top two divisions decided in midweek not to stage the matches of the November 30 weekend which comes just before the French parliament is due to vote on  a law levying a two-year 75pc tax rate on those who earned E1m-plus.

Platini, French leader of UEFA, suggested that a public coping with an austerity economy would have little sympathy with footballer clubs and players.

He said: “There are not many strikes which are understood by the public. Is that good or bad? I’ve no idea.

“Top footballers who go on strike, with the salaries they earn, that’s really going to go down well, isn’t it?”


French league president Frederic Thiriez has spoken in support of the solidarity among the clubs “in wishing to protect French football which represents 25,000 employees.”

The players’ union and coaches’ association have both registered complaints with Minister of Sports Valérie Fourneyron and Hollande is expected to discuss the issue next week at a meeting requested by French federation president Noël Le Graët.

The tax, proposed for application over two years and up to a value of 5pc of turnover, would affect 13 top division clubs and raise an estimated E44m, of which almost half (E20m) would be due from champions Paris Saint-Germain.

The main matches on the strike weekend are PSG v Lyon and Monaco v Rennes. The last time the French league was hit by a strike was in 1972.