UEFA has revealed it awarded the final to Madrid rather than the new Wembley stadium because of the change. “The reason is the taxes,” said UEFA president Michel Platini, after awarding the final to Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. “The concerns we had over players being taxed were minimised by the
English FA but not confirmed by the British Government.”
Platini also said that Hamburg would stage the 2010 UEFA Cup final ahead of Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium.
The decision has provoked a major dispute between UK government departments with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport arguing that the Treasury is jeopardizing the UK’S ability to host major sports events. According to UK press sources, Andy Burnham, the Culture Secretary, and other ministers, are applying pressure on the Treasury to back down on the issue,
UEFA had been set to announce the venue for the 2011 final last week but has delayed the decision in a move that could give Wembley a chance to provide assurances over the tax issues.