Just like other major football leagues in the world, the raging coronavirus pandemic has forced the lucrative English Premier League to become an entity struggling to keep running as smoothly as possible.
Almost all the clubs in the Premier League and below are looking for alternative means of remaining afloat amid the pandemic which has forced all the cadre of leagues in the United Kingdom to remain suspended indefinitely.
Since there are no live matches, it means there won’t be earnings from tickets sale, revenues from television coverage and revenue from advertisements. All these are means football clubs pay the high wages they pay to their players on a weekly basis.
Some clubs in the Premier League – Tottenham and others, have even decided to cut the wages of their non-playing staff in order to keep the club alive. While others are waiting for the Professional Football Association (PFA) to allow the players to accept a pay cut.
Meanwhile, as the clubs are waiting on the PFA which has been insisting that the players should not accept any pay cut until the clubs present their financial situation, the association also issued a statement recently to counter the recommendation of the league for players to accept a 30% pay cut.
The PFA insisted via its statement released on Saturday that if the players accept a 30% pay cut which would equate to more than £500m in wage reductions, it would amount to a loss in tax contributions of more than £200m to the UK government.
Yet, more clubs believe that it is the major way they can remain afloat while the coronavirus pandemic last.
Other Premier League clubs are facing the same situation
But the chairman of Burnley Football Club, Mike Garlick, has a different idea. He believes that a club like his may not survive if football does not resume before August this year.
According to him, if the outgoing season is cancelled as it is being contemplated in some quarters, his club is likely to lose £50m.
Lack of matchday revenue for the remaining four home games of Burnley’s campaign would cost the club around £5m if the season is cancelled or matches take place behind closed doors.
Burnley chairman told the club’s official website that: “It’s a completely unprecedented situation that we and other Premier League clubs face and which we could not have foreseen in any way only just a few weeks ago.
“It’s now not just about Burnley or any other individual club anymore, it’s about the whole football ecosystem from the Premier League downwards and all the other businesses and communities that feed on that ecosystem.
“As a club, as fans, as staff members and as a town we are all in this together and I’m sure we can get through this by sticking together and helping each other in every way possible in these tough times.
“We all need to do our bit, however small, together as one club.”
So, as it stands, the coronavirus pandemic has the key to the total collapse or survival of most clubs in the Premier League. The earlier the pandemic ends, the better for the clubs and indeed the whole world.