Mascherano charged with tax fraud

Spanish authorities have announced that Javier Mascherano has been charged with tax fraud for evading taxes totalling more than 1.1 million pounds.

It is alleged that the Argentina international failed to declare income from image rights between 2011 and 2012 by using foreign-based companies.

The Spanish public prosecutor claims Mascherano defrauded authorities of £436,443.72 in 2011 and £719,470.30 in 2012.

While Mascherano has made no public comment on the matter, the public prosecutor added that the 31-year-old paid the amount owed plus nearly £150,000 in interest this month.

The former Liverpool midfielder is the latest Barcelona star to fall foul of tax laws in Spain, with Lionel Messi and his father accused of defrauding the Spanish government of more than £3m by filing false returns for the years 2006 to 2009.

Neymar, meanwhile, had £33m in assets frozen last week for allegedly failing to pay around £9.8m in taxes between 2011 and 2013. Both players have denied the accusations levelled against them.