June 18, 2019 / 2:34 PM / 3 months ago

Mike Ashley-backed Goals Soccer Centres to hire Deloitte to explore options

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Newcastle United v Leicester City - St James' Park, Newcastle, Britain - September 29, 2018 Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley REUTERS/Scott Heppell

(Reuters) - British five-a-side football pitch operator Goals Soccer Centres confirmed on Tuesday it is hiring audit firm Deloitte to help it assess options amid discussions with the UK tax authority HMRC regarding certain tax errors.

The Mike Ashley-backed company said Deloitte will work with the company’s current advisers to plan for potential actions the board may consider following its discussions with HMRC.

Talks with the HMRC relates to the potential “misdeclaration” of value added tax (VAT) that came to light during an ongoing investigation into the company’s historic accounting policies and practices.

The AIM-listed company, which suspended trading in its shares in March after identifying the tax error, also said it appointed Mike McGill as interim chief financial officer to replace Martin Johnson.

Sky News had earlier reported that the company is preparing to launch a sale process within months and that it hired Deloitte to advise on it’s future.

Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct International Plc holds 18.9% in Goal Soccer.

Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong and Sangameswaran S in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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