AC Milan vs Lazio Goes Ahead as Serie A Strike Ends

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AC Milan vs Lazio Goes Ahead as Serie A Strike Ends
Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images
Damiano Thommasi President of AIC

Damiano Tommasi, head of AIC, the players' union, announced that a compromise contract had been signed for this season, ending the impasse between players and the Italian clubs.

The contract will only cover the coming season, but has been agreed upon between AIC and LEGA, the Italian clubs' union to ensure no more fixtures are delayed.

The main disagreements revolve around the Solidarity Tax and whether a club can drop players from training with the first team.

With austerity measures being introduced across Europe, the Italian government has introduced the Solidarity Tax, espousing the necessity of increasing tax on Serie A's high wage earners to foster a sense of shared responsibility for the country's economic welfare.

A number of players contracts include "netto" arrangements, where their salary is agreed as a sum not inclusive of tax.

AIC believes that the Solidarity Tax should be paid by the clubs. If it is paid by the players not only would it diminish their incomes but also break playing contracts, which place the burden of tax on the employers.

LEGA however believe that the essence of the Solidarity Tax asserts all should contribute to the fiscal betterment of the Italian economy, and the players should not have special consideration which would in effect raise the overheads of each club if they were forced to foot the bill.

This could also possibly affect Serie A clubs' good standing with UEFA, as Financial Fair Play rules come into consideration, by raising the ratio of wages to income.

Another problem to arise in negotiations is that AIC do not believe clubs should be able to ostracize players by having them train separately from the main team. Many players who have fallen out with the manager, or are otherwise deemed unwanted by the club, are assigned training sessions away from the first team squad.

Clubs can employ separate training assignments to convince a player to move on instead of sitting on a lucrative contract. It is also seen as a way to remove bad influences from the dressing room.

AIC view this practice as unfair and want it abolished, undoubtedly LEGA would feel that their clubs have the right to assign their players in any way they see fit.

What seems to be a monumental test of player power is set to run on through the upcoming season.

After last week's round of games was postponed, the compromise contract will allow Serie A's season to go ahead on Friday, when Lazio visit the San Siro to challenge title-holders AC Milan.

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