Page last updated at 10:32 GMT, Monday, 3 May 2010 11:32 UK

Finance warning to Scottish football clubs

Ibrox Stadium
Rangers is said to have debts of more than 25m

Scottish football clubs could feel the heat under European Commission debt proposals, according to an international law firm.

HBJ Gateley Wareing has said the EC could force clubs to reduce the levels of debt they currently hold.

In Scotland, Rangers FC has debts of about £25m and Scottish football overall has debts of more than £100m.

The legal firm said one reason that clubs were feeling the financial strain was ever greater transfer fees.

Under the 300-page EU rulebook, which came into force in December last year, the European Commission gained a greater say in the area of sport.

The commissioner, Androulla Vassiliou, plans to publish a communication outlining a new EU framework for co-operation in sport later this year.

She has said the commission could try to reduce the currently high levels of debt carried by some European football clubs, especially in the UK and Spain.

Simon Catto of HBJ Gateley Wareing said: "These are challenging times for many football clubs, and concerns are being raised by some bodies over the role of UEFA and potential interference by the European Commission on the debt levels experienced by many football clubs."

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