John Barnes, the 45 year old former manager of both Celtic Football Club and the Jamaican national team, who was also sacked as manager of Tranmere Rovers earlier this month, has been declared bankrupt over failure to pay his taxes. As a result of his tax arrears, a spokesman for The Insolvency Service confirmed that Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs made a petition for bankruptcy against Barnes which was granted by a Liverpool court in the last week.

The amount of tax debt accrued by the ex-Liverpool and England winger has not been released but what has been made clear is that the former player’s assets are now being examined by the official receiver. John Barnes is insistent that the outstanding tax debt that has resulted in his bankruptcy is simply due to an oversight which he is now in the process of correcting. It is understood that Barnes has been in touch with the Inland Revenue since the hearing to discuss his arrears and try to come to some kind of agreement over a possible repayment schedule for the unpaid taxes. The television football pundit and ex-Liverpool star’s bankruptcy is expected to be discharged on October 14, 2010.
There was a distinct element of forewarning in an interview that Barnes had with a national newspaper at the beginning of the year, in which the father-of-six spoke openly about his money woes. Perhaps someone from HM Revenue and Customs had their interest spiked by the claim, “I don’t like dealing with taxes of course.” He also said that he simply didn’t like not having enough money and didn’t like dealing with bills. Well John, who does? Whilst he was serving a seven-month contract with the Jamaica national football team last year, Barnes managed to avoid a significant fine for driving without insurance. He pleaded poverty despite earning an estimated £4,000 a week.

The lesson to learn from John’s situation is that it never helps to ignore the situation. Get debt help as soon as you can foresee potential payment difficulties. Talk to a specialist debt advisor at Harrington Brooks, one of the longest established financial practices in the UK (0800 048 1764). They’ll be able to offer you a personal debt solution that will hopefully help you to avoid bankruptcy.