Why Did Wesley Sneijder Move to Turkey? 3

Wesley Sneijder has agreed to join Galatasaray – we all know that. But why Galatasaray? I mean, it’s a great club but surely, there are bigger stages for 28 year old Sneijder – former European Champion.

Wesley Sneijder Wearing his new Galatasaray Jersey

Wesley Sneijder Wearing his new Galatasaray Jersey

Well, it’s probably because only  Galatasaray could really afford the Dutchman. Why? Tax issues (of course).

It all began when Sneijder was asked by Internazionale to cut down his €5m a year (net) salary. He didn’t agree and so the transfer saga began.

However, no other top European team agreed to take on Sneijder – who is an expensive gamble – mainly because the tax rate on his salary would have been between 40% to 50%, which means paying for him between €7m to €7.5m (gross) – not including transfer fee (between €7m to  €9).

Enter Galatasaray. Because of  Turkish law, footballers only pay 15% tax (in the second league it’s only 10%). Which means Galatasaray will only pay €750,000 to tax authorities as opposed to the €2m+ other European teams would have paid for Sneijder.

One of the many problems of the Financial Fair Play is exactly this.

The issue of widely differing tax rates and social security costs, which the European leagues are subject to, means that some clubs have to pay a player much higher gross wages in order for a footballer to be left with the same net salary as if he belonged to a club in another country.

Wesley Sneijder poses with his new boss in his new Galatasaray shirt

Wesley Sneijder poses with his new boss in his new Galatasaray shirt

Tax rates can make huge sporting difference. Is it fair? And what if the British government decides to lower tax rates for footballers to only 7% – could anyone compete with that?



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