Wed | May 27, 2020

Southampton becomes 1st EPL club to defer player salaries

Published:Thursday | April 9, 2020 | 9:50 AM
Southampton's Sofiane Boufal (left) and Newcastle United's Matt Ritchie battle for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Southampton and Newcastle United, at St Mary's Stadium, in Southampton, England, Saturday, March 7, 2020. (Mark Kerton/PA via AP)

SOUTHAMPTON, England (AP) — Southampton became the first Premier League club to announce an agreement with players to defer part of their salaries during the coronavirus pandemic.

Players and coaches at the south-coast team will not be paid their full salaries during April, May or June “to help protect the future of the club, the staff that work within it and the community we serve,” Southampton said Thursday.

Southampton also said it will not be placing non-playing staff on the British government’s job retention scheme, which allows businesses to put workers on furlough and receive 80% of their salaries from the government, up to a maximum of 2,500 pounds ($3,000) per month.

“Our owners … have put measures in place to ensure that all staff not deferring part of their salaries will continue to receive 100% of their pay, paid in the normal way until June 30,” the club said. “Any decision on the future beyond this date will be made in advance of this, but only when more information is known.”

Tottenham and Newcastle are among the clubs in the world’s richest soccer competition to have taken advantage of a government scheme that was implemented to help businesses survive the national lockdown.

Liverpool did, too, before performing a u-turn on Monday after a backlash from former players and in the media.

At a meeting last week, league clubs agreed to consult with their players over pay deferrals and reductions amounting to 30% of their total annual salary.

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