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Premier League and tax authorities in discussions over image rights

The Premier League is aiming to broker a deal with tax authorities in order to protect players and clubs from the loss of up to £100m in taxes, according to the Financial Times. HM Revenue & Customs was reported to be investigating deals between clubs and image rights companies set up by players. These companies are often based offshore and are therefore out of reach of tax officials.

Experts said the Revenue was missing out on £100m in tax because of such deals.

The Premier League told the Financial Times: "We are in discussions with HMRC. All players have some degree of image rights attached to them. It is legitimate to have some element of image rights, but HMRC would query the level that some have attached to them."

According to the report, Jeff Millington of Begbies Traynor, a former Revenue manager who initiated its investigation into image rights, said: "The Revenue's legal opinion is robust. The evidence they see is quite favourable to the Revenue. When you consider the amount of tax at risk, the Revenue isn't going to do a deal."

The Revenue said: "The government remains committed to ensuring everyone pays their fair share of tax and that the minority who seek not to do so should not succeed."

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