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Tory MP earned £1,970 officiating at Camp Nou match while Parliament was sitting

The game took place as the Commons was debating the Universal Credit scheme.

A Tory MP earned almost £2,000 for running the line at a high-profile European Champions League football match while his colleagues debated the problems with Universal Credit.

Douglas Ross was paid £1,970 to act as assistant referee at the Camp Nou as Barcelona took on Olympiacos in October as the controversial benefits policy was being debated, a move which led to criticism from political opponents.

The Moray MP declared almost £7,000 in earnings from his refereeing activities in the latest update of the Commons register of interests, covering 10 games in Scotland and on the continent.

Following the controversy over his role at the Barcelona match, Mr Ross said he would no longer referee games while Parliament is sitting.

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Douglas Ross (centre) warming up for the game in Barcelona (John Walton/Empics/PA)

The decision meant his dream of officiating at next year’s World Cup is over.

Other entries in the latest updates to the register show John Bercow received tickets and hospitality from Manchester City worth £2,400 on November 5, when the team beat the Speaker’s beloved Arsenal 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium.

He also declared that he had received tickets to a series of top tennis matches at the ATP World Tour Finals at London’s O2 in November.

Mr Bercow, a keen fan of the sport, received tickets and hospitality worth almost £1,000 from the Association of Tennis Professionals and a pair of tickets worth £480 from the Lawn Tennis Association.

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