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Dec 3, 2012

Inquiry to look at FFP impact on France

The French government has asked for an inquiry to examine the impact UEFA's Financial Fair Play rules will have on French football, with big-spending Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco coming under particular scrutiny.

The Cultural Affairs, Education and Sport Commission has set up a parliamentary mission led by Thierry Braillard, the deputy for the Rhone region, to investigate how FFP rules will affect clubs when they come into force in 2014.

"The aim of this inquiry is to talk to people at UEFA about Financial Fair Play, bearing in mind that, for the 2012-13 season, the cumulative deficit of professional clubs in France was €250 million," Braillard said.

"The commission will focus in particular on the financing of clubs like Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco by Qatari or Russian investors, and the fairness of that in relation to their opponents in domestic competition."

The inquiry, which will take up to four months, will also look at the impact the new rules will have on the development of infrastructure, notably stadia, ahead of Euro 2016, which France will host.

Braillard said he would also detail "the situation of French clubs in European competition in relation to their opponents in other European leagues".

Monaco's unique place in French football will also come under the spotlight of the LFP, which runs professional football in France.

Foreign players at the current Ligue 2 leaders do not have to pay taxes, a situation that allowed Monaco to bring in Fernando Morientes, the catalyst of their 2004 Champions League final appearance, on loan from Real Madrid, while stars at clubs on French territory are taxed at 75% on revenue exceeding €1 million, a situation many club presidents feel is unfair.

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