Tournament news
The Negative Effects of VAT on 5-a-side Football
Published by Torneoz
28 | AUG | 2012
The current coalition government has announced a controversial plan to tax people participating in 5 a-side football. All weather pitches are extremely popular amongst amateur footballers with over a 150 5-aside complexes in existence at the moment. The HMRC is insisting on 20% VAT from companies operating such facilities. With VAT at 20%, the tax will mean players are paying an extra pound for every game on top of the already inflated prices.

This new plan will have many negative connotations and has been severely criticised by ex-players and athletes. Ex-England international, Stuart Pearce, has warned the tax could narrow the talent pool for the top teams in the country. At a time when English football is falling behind its competitors, it is thought this new VAT plan could further affect England’s chances of bringing through talented youngsters. 5 a-side leagues have backed this up by claiming the new tax will prove to be disastrous for the sport and lead to the closure of many small leagues.

Another negative implication arising from the tax is the affect it will have on the health of both children and adults. Whilst Britain is in the midst of a fight against obesity, these new plans may end up placing an even greater strain on the NHS. With up to 600,000 children nationwide using these facilities for free during daytime hours, it is feared that owners may have to put an end to the complimentary use of pitches.

The opposition to the new tax plan is growing and there are still hopes the government might perform a U-turn. Prominent athletes and managers such as Steve Redgrave, Harry Redknapp and Clive Woodward have branded the move disgusting and are all speaking out against the idea. The plan has also been criticised by sports minister Hugh Robertson who has spoken of the detrimental effects this could have on the sport. As opposition to the plan continues to grow, the Telegraph has asked people to join in with the resistance to the tax plans and asked people to sign their petition. The petition is designed to show the government the condemnation of the tax by the general public and is a great way for ordinary people to get their voice heard.