Belgian MEP calls for investigation into Bale deal
Derk Jan Eppink claims that the operation was bankrolled by nationalized bank, Bankia – the recipient of an EU rescue package.
Euro MP Derk Jan Eppink announced today that he plans to ask the European Commission to investigate the means by which Real Madrid completed the transfer of Gareth Bale, arguing that the operation was bankrolled by Spanish nationalized bank, Bankia – an institution which was recapitalized with a 19 billion euro bailout, funded by the European Union.
Eppink, vice-president for the conservative List Dedecker party, explained that, at some point over the next few days, he will send a letter to the Commission expressing his concern for the financing of the operation and will call for measures to be taken.
The Belgian MEP has criticized Real Madrid for their acquisition of Bale “for a world record fee of 100 million euros” when “they have accumulated a debt of some 600 million euros, financed to a large degree by Caja Madrid”, a savings bank which now forms part of Bankia.
Bankia “was recently rescued by the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), requiring an injection of no less than 18 billion euros and yet now they offer support in the transaction conducted by Real Madrid,” said Eppink, adding, “European Union funds cannot be used for such unsustainable practices”.
Eppink plans to send his complaint to European Commissioner for Competition, Joaquín Alumnia, who is presently studying other cases involving EU funds which have found their way into Spanish football. At the start of August, the European Commission announced that it was analyzing the financial situations of Spanish clubs which are not public limited sports companies: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Athletic Club and Osasuna.