Newsletter

Get your daily update and weekly newsletter by signing up today!

Opinion

Liverpool, Spurs and Newcastle United owners are the enemy – Not Premier League players

7 months ago
Share

On 27 February 2020, Liverpool announced their latest financials.

For the 20218/19 season, Liverpool made a pre-tax profit of £42m and announced they were seeing ‘sustained growth across all areas of the club’ as they move forward.

The accounts also revealed they had spent a record £223m on players in that year/season, the likes of Alisson, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri.

Moving forward 37 days and the billionaire owners of Liverpool have made another announcement (see below).

This announcement yesterday (4 April 2020) revealed that Liverpool were now passing responsibility to the Government to finance most of the wages of their lowest paid staff, using/abusing the furlough scheme.

Billionaire Mike Ashley was quickest out of the traps to do this (abuse the furlough scheme), on Monday 30 March ordering Lee Charnley to send an email to the lowest paid staff, telling them they were now relying on the Government to financially support them in the coming months. Staff were told that the decision to opt out of paying 80% of the lowest paid staff’s wages ‘was to safeguard the club’s future’, quite incredible. After passing these wage costs on to the public purse, Mike Ashley then flying out to his Miami mansion instead of experiencing lockdown in the UK like the rest of us. Ashley refusing to even put out an official statement attempting to justify what he had done, total contempt for Newcastle fans and the general public.

Joe Lewis is a tax exile reported to be worth well over £4billion, he has done the same at Spurs. Daniel Levy announcing that Tottenham’s ordinary workers, the lowest paid, would now be relying on the Government to financially support them.

Astonishing then that so many have chosen to make Premier League players the enemy of the people.

Players who are overwhelmingly willing to do their bit and simply waiting for a plan to be agreed between the PFA and the authorities, that would see players across all divisions doing what they can to help. Whilst in the meantime many of those players also doing individual extra acts of generosity, including Newcastle’s Danny Rose.

This at the same time when some unscrupulous billionaire owners of Premier League clubs are instead looking at ways to take advantage of tax payers’ money that was never intended to be used in this way.

The Government needed to do the furlough scheme in such a way as to catch as many deserving cases as possible during this emergency. They didn’t have time or resources to go case by case as to who needs/deserves or doesn’t need/deserve help.

What this has also meant though, is that in trying to catch as many deserving cases as possible, it also sadly meant some would take advantage who weren’t desperate or deserving.

Remember, this emergency support to pay 80% of wages for millions of people, has major future repercussions.

When some kind of normality returns and most of us are back working, there will be serious financial pressures for all countries.

Every penny that is taken unnecessarily now from public money, adds to the future pressures.

Bottom line is that basically, by using/abusing the furlough scheme, the owners of clubs such as Liverpool, Newcastle and Spurs, are taking money from public services in the future, you know, like the NHS…

Liverpool Official Statement – 4 April 2020:

Liverpool Football Club is continuing to deal with a range of challenges caused by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and would like to update supporters on the progress that has been made to date.

While our priority from the outset has been to focus primarily on the health and wellbeing of our players, staff, supporters and local community, the club has also committed to playing as full a role as possible in the Premier League’s ongoing response to the crisis.

As such, we welcome Friday’s announcement from the Premier League which confirmed the provision of support for the National Health Service, the EFL and National League and a commitment for the 2019-20 season to resume only when it is safe to do so.

At club level, various other measures have been taken to protect the best interests of the club and our staff in both the short term and the long term, with all such actions being undertaken following various internal discussions. In some instances, further measures will follow only once all parties are in a position to proceed and updates will be provided as and when this is the case.

Liverpool FC has placed some staff who are impacted by the Premier League suspension on furlough. The club has confirmed those staff will be paid 100 per cent of their salaries to ensure no member of staff is financially disadvantaged. Last month the club also confirmed that it would pay its matchday and non-matchday staff while the Premier League is suspended.

Even prior to the decision on staff furloughing, there was a collective commitment at senior levels of the club – on and off the pitch – with everyone working towards a solution that secures jobs for employees of the club during this unprecedented crisis. There is ongoing active engagement about the topic of salary deductions during the period matches are not being played to schedule. These discussions are complex and as a result the process is ongoing.

In addition, with the health and wellbeing of all club staff being of paramount importance, a number of proactive steps have been taken to assist staff during the crisis. Steps include regular updates from the chief executive to keep staff informed of decisions and latest information and a new online portal providing health and wellbeing information and key contacts. This also includes guidance from the club’s sports psychologist on mental health and wellbeing and healthy eating advice from the club’s head of nutrition. The club has also launched a new learning and development platform providing specific help with adapting to working from home and dealing with remote working.

Liverpool FC has also been actively working with its players, Liverpool FC Foundation and the club’s community outreach programme, Red Neighbours, to ensure its community response is targeted to help local families in food crises and those that are socially isolated. A significant donation has been made to St Andrew’s foodbank in north Liverpool by the first-team players and Liverpool FC Foundation, an emergency foodbank appeal was launched by Liverpool FC Foundation to help those in need and LFC staff are continuing to volunteer to help ensure families have food throughout the crisis and beyond.

The club also launched ‘LFC Connect’; a social isolation initiative aimed at telephone contact with the most vulnerable in our communities. Our fan services team have been busy contacting the elderly and vulnerable and having a virtual cuppa with them.

For those who would normally participate in our schools and community programmes, we have filmed virtual sessions and exercise routines that can be done at home in order to keep fitness levels up. These fitness-at-home videos cover virtual chair yoga, walking football for our team of over-50s, mindfulness and fitness and football coaching for the tens of thousands of children who participate in our weekly programmes.’

Share

If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]

Have your say

© 2020 The Mag. All Rights Reserved. Design & Build by Mediaworks