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Nov 8, 2012

Deportivo hit by Spanish taxman

Deportivo la Coruna are the latest La Liga club to be hit by serious financial bad news, with the Spanish government reportedly embargoing all their income, including television, ticket and commercial revenues.

A report in Spanish paper Marca on Thursday claimed that, with Deportivo approximately €100 million in debt, long-serving club president Augusto Cesar Lendoiro would have no option but to seek protection from creditors under Spain's Ley Concursal, the Spanish equivalent of entering administration. This has led the Spanish taxman, who is reportedly owed €34 million, to protect its position.

Coach Jose Luis Oltra told reporters in La Coruna on Thursday morning that he could not comment on the situation as it was outside of his area of responsibility.

"I have no information about that subject and I am not the right person to speak on it," Oltra said. "The dressing-room keeps away from this issue. I do not get involved in things I cannot influence."

The Galician club's wages are likely to be affected, but Portuguese winger Pizzi said on Wednesday that he and his team-mates were not worrying about off-the-pitch issues.

"We must be relaxed, do our work and defend the colours of our team," Pizzi said. "The directors look after financial matters, the players must remain calm. Nobody has told us anything. It is a difficult situation that nobody likes, but we cannot let it affect us."

Financial issues are nothing new for Deportivo, who won La Liga in 2000 and reached the Champions League semi-finals in 2004, but were subsequently forced to sell star players and were relegated in 2011. They bounced back last season as champions of the Segunda Division and are currently 16th in the top flight with ten points from as many games.

The Spanish government, hit with its own serious financial problems, has taken a harder line on football clubs who reportedly owe a total of approximately €750 million in unpaid taxes.

All Malaga's income is currently embargoed by the authorities, a situation which has contributed to the club's ongoing inability to pay its players on time, despite them reaching the knockout phase of the Champions League this week.

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