Like Arsene Wenger, Richard Brooks plays Dennis Bergkamp up front. He shows how Bergkamp led the line when it came to getting some of his rewards from Arsenal paid to an off-shore entity he had established while playing for Inter Milan. The Dutch and Arsenal striker with the quick brain and feet was no slouch when it came to innovation off the field. Bergkamp showed that footballers as celebrities could profit from their image. Image rights, says Brooks, are “an intangible commodity as pregnant with income tax possibilities as drug’s companies patents were for its corporation tax bill”.
“non-doms”. That is not to say they did not benefit from the various schemes!
Because players are interested in the net rewards, clubs could get better foreign players for the same net payment. This is the competitive advantage foreign players have and it goes a long way towards providing an answer to the question Brooks raised: Why were there only 11 non-British or Irish players in the top flight of English football in 1992 and 250 of them in 2007?
Brooks goes further and says that it also means that “talented British youngsters struggle to find places at the top level and the national [English] team plumbs new depths of under-achievement: failure to qualify for Euro 2008, a dismal showing at the 2010 World Cup and a further also-ran finish at Euro 2012”.
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