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Bayern’s James Rodriguez becomes latest footballer on Spanish taxman’s hit-list

Spain's taxman wants Bayern Munich's Colombian midfielder James Rodriguez to pay €11.65 million ($13.64m) for evading taxes when he played at Real Madrid, the El Mundo daily reported Thursday.

Bayern's James Rodriguez becomes latest footballer on Spanish taxman's hit-list
Bayern Munich's Colombian midfielder James Rodriguez is being probed by the Spanish taxman. Photo: AFP

James, who moved to Bayern Munich last year, is accused of having evaded €6.35 million in taxes, mainly linked to his image rights, and would have to pay that amount plus a fine and interests for a total of €11.65 million, it reported.

Citing sources close to the case, the daily said James was transferred to Real Madrid from Monaco for €80 million mid-2014, but that year he registered as a non-resident.

READ MORE: Prosecutors want 11 yrs jail and €59 million fine for ex-Barça boss

Tax authorities, though, reportedly believe he should have registered as a resident, which means he should settle the difference, or €6.35 million, related to his salary and the sale of image rights.

Spain's tax authorities refused to comment when contacted by AFP.   

The 27-year-old, who won the Golden Boot for the top goal scorer in the 2014 World Cup, joins a long list of other players who have got on the wrong side of Spain's taxman.

Some have reached deals, like Cristiano Ronaldo, who recently moved to Juventus from Real Madrid and accepted to pay 18.8 million euros and a two-year jail sentence he won't have to serve.

FC Barcelona's star Lionel Messi, though, went to court where he was fined €2.1 million for tax fraud and given 21 months in jail, which was subsequently converted into another fine.

READ ALSO: Spain's Supreme Court confirms Messi fraud sentence

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British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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