The PFA are yet to achieve a breakthrough in their talks to cut player wages for a temporary period to aid with the fight against the coronavirus.

Many football clubs across the country are going through a financially uncertain time as there is no clarity over if and when the football season will resume.

Premier League clubs including Spurs, Liverpool and Newcastle have already decided to use the government furlough scheme to pay some of their staff (Guardian).

The Premier League claimed yesterday that all clubs had agreed to approach their own playing staff about taking wage cuts or deferrals.

The issue was one of the topics which was up for discussion during the meeting between top flight clubs on Friday (BBC Sport) but there has been no major development on the matter so far.

The PFA released a statement yesterday in which they reiterated their commitment towards helping EFL and National League clubs, the non-playing staff at different clubs as well as contributing to the NHS to aid their fight against the pandemic.

However, they also suggested that reducing player wages will cost the Government a substantial sum as it will mean players will be contributing less in taxes and would be detrimental for the NHS.

A part of their statement read: “Going forward, we are working together to find a solution which will be continually reviewed in order to assess the circumstance of the COVID-19 crisis.

“The players are mindful that as PAYE employees, the combined tax on their salaries is a significant contribution to funding essential public services – which are especially critical at this time. Taking a 30% salary deduction will cost the Exchequer substantial sums. This would be detrimental to our NHS and other government-funded services.

“The proposed 30% salary deduction over a 12-month period equates to over £500m in wage reductions and a loss in tax contributions of over £200m to the government. What effect does this loss of earning to the government mean for the NHS? Was this considered in the Premier League proposal and did the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock factor this in when asking players to take a salary cut?

“We welcomed the opportunity to discuss this with the Premier League today and we are happy to continue talks.”

Spurs Web Opinion

Footballers are often easy targets during crisis situations but in reality, they are just a tiny proportion of the millionaires in the UK. Additionally, most of them come from humble backgrounds and already make substantial charitable contributions. However, there is no doubt that they should pitch in to help clubs in lower divisions, who are under the risk of going bust, and absorb more of the financial losses compared to the vulnerable non-playing staff.

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