Three MEPs have written to European Commission to investigate whether £78m deal was backed by Spanish banks bailed out by EU taxpayers.The question, tabled by British Conservative MEP Daniel Dalton, the Belgian MEP Sander Loones and Ramon Termosa, Spanish MEP, was precipitated by questions asked by Telegraph Sport about the promissory notes that were part of the details of the Bale deal disclosed on the Football Leaks website last month.
|Photo: GETTY IMAGES|
|Bale at his unveiling in 2013|
The political climate in Spain at the time, one year after the EU’s €41 billion [£32 billion] bailout of the country, made borrowing the money for the deal difficult for Madrid president Florentino Perez. The promissory note system was a more acceptable way of financing the world-record transfer without it being a direct loan from a financial system that would have been bankrupt but for the EU’s intervention.¡Buenos días! Today's frontpage dominated by Bale contract leak: Spurs and RM lie about final cost: ❌€91M ✅€101M pic.twitter.com/RKHK4Xg1yL— AS English (@English_AS) January 21, 2016
The three MEPs say that if the bailed-out Spanish banks were using Spanish and European taxpayers’ money indirectly to guarantee the Bale deal it would constitute illegal state aid.
Daniel Dalton said: "If taxpayers’ money was used to underwrite the Gareth Bale transfer deal then this is something the EU should investigate further. Real Madrid are the world's richest football club and if it has used a state owned bank, owned by taxpayers to guarantee multi-million pound record transfer fees, then it is clearly something the EU should look to address to ensure there are no unfair competitive advantages given to football teams supported by taxpayer-funded financial institutions."
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