Clubs see red over Hector’s tax penalty.

Premier League football clubs are set to tackle a draft Inland Revenue tax revaluation which has left them facing 350% increases in the tax payable on their stadiums. Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur and Coventry are among those seeing red after being cornered with a potentially massive increase in bills. Liverpool faces the largest leap, with its rateable value due to shoot up 370% from £350,000 to £1.65m as a result of revaluations by the Revenue’s valuation office. Coventry City faces a 352% increase to £815,000 while London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham will see their rates go up 127% to £1.49m and £1.4m respectively. Roger Messenger of consultants Wilks, which represents a number of Premier League clubs, said the proposed increases were ‘not acceptable’. He blamed the increases on the inclusion of television income in the revaluations for the first time. He said: ‘This has not been agreed by the football authorities and we believe the increases are grossly over-inflated.’ The rises will take effect from April but several clubs are expected to appeal against the hikes, which the Revenue said reflected teams’ growing commercial success since the last review in 1995. PwC tax partner John Whiting said the rises were partly driven by the redevelopment of the inner city areas where grounds tend to be located, while clubs have also become more inventive in maximising revenue from the grounds. He added: ‘It seems Hector scores more frequently than most strikers and he’s very good at penalties.’

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