The Premier League has confirmed that players will be asked to take a 30% pay cut to help protect jobs at their respective clubs.
Following a meeting on Friday, the clubs also reiterated their desire to complete the domestic season, however, no date has been set on a potential return to action. Instead, they will wait for the government to give them the green light when “it is safe and appropriate to do so.”
Having told players to resist accepting wage cuts when the subject was raised on a club-by-club basis, it is expected that the PFA and LMA will advise their members to accept the terms now that a consensus has been reached. A meeting is scheduled for tomorrow.
The pressure was heaped on top-level players yesterday when Health Secretary Matt Hancock took a cheap shot at them in the government’s daily coronavirus press conference.
Just days after billionaire-owned Newcastle United and Sp*rs took the opportunity to furlough non-playing staff to cut their own losses, he said:
“Given the sacrifices people are making, including some of my colleagues in the NHS, who have made the ultimate sacrifice and gone into work and caught the disease and have sadly died, I think the first thing Premier League footballers can do is make a contribution; take a pay cut and play their part.”
From what we can tell, most players, following the lead of their continental peers, won’t have a problem taking a cut. They aren’t blind to their comparative wealth but nor have they been in a position to speed up the legal specifics of such an agreement. In the meantime, many have made donations to charity.
The Premier League also confirmed that a £20 million donation would be made to the NHS to support communities, families and vulnerable groups during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Clubs also voted to advance £125 million of funds to help EFL and National League teams who are struggling to stay in business without matchday income to support them.