PARIS: French clubs have called off their proposed strike in protest at the ‘super tax’ planned for the next two years by President Francois Hollande.
The decision followed decisive expressions of disapproval in a number of public opinion polls – as UEFA’s French president, Michel Platini, had cautioned.
Jean-Pierre Louvel, president of the clubs’ association, seeking to put a gloss on the climbdown, said: “We want to negotiate a resolution to this crisis but the idea of a strike has not been discounted.”
Representatives of clubs in the top two divisions met again on Wednesday to discuss the strike. This had been scheduled for the weekend between November 29 and December 2 in opposition to the 75pc tax rate for those people earning more than €1m.
The tax would affect 13 top division clubs and raise an estimated €44m, of which almost half (€20m) would be due from champions Paris Saint-Germain. The last time the French league was hit by a strike was in 1972.
Hollande, pressed on football’s concerns about a talent drain, said last week: “When the tax law is voted, the law will be the same for all companies regardless of what they are. This does not stop us from having a dialogue on the difficulties facing professional clubs, but everyone needs to be aware of the rules.”