Any Arsenal player that refuses to take a 12.5% pay cut should never play for the club again.
The Mirror reported at the weekend that the club had made an offer to players which consisted of:
- A 12.5% pay cut for 12 months from April 2020 to March 2021 (players paid in final week of each month so to start this month)
- The full amount is then refunded if Arsenal qualify for the Champions League
- If Arsenal do not qualify for the Champions League, no money is returned back
- If Arsenal fail to qualify for the Champions League, but qualify for the Europa League the cut becomes 7.5%
- If the season does not finish and/or Arsenal does not get full money from broadcasters then they will ask the players to find a “further solution”
Football is quickly moving from needing to furlough non-playing staff to needing players to take pay cuts to survive.
Clubs have 3 main sources of income:
- Match day revenue
With no football, there is no match day revenue.
Most clubs will have to issue refunds for unused games this season if it is cancelled (or played behind closed doors).
A bigger issue for them is they will not get the season ticket income that usually arrives in June.
This will then have further ramifications with broadcasters like Sky likely to withhold television money if they have no product to put out, and commercial partners looking through contracts to see if they can be broken, football does face a tough time.
The main expenditure for clubs salaries.
For any business, when revenue drys up, cash is king. And the reality it most clubs do not have much cash.
The situation is even worse when you consider wages to turnover for most clubs.
A lot of Premier League clubs will be running out of money by July if revenue completely dries up.
It is all well and good Stan Collymore coming out and saying players “are absolutely right to say they won’t accept a pay cut” without understanding that the world has changed, and clubs soon will no longer be able to afford those contracts.
The only option for their survival is to ask players to take a pay cut. A pay cut to ensure their club survives.
Clubs can not enforce a pay cut. This will be breach of contract and allow the players to leave on a free if they choose.
It is down to the players, not the clubs. They must step up to ensure the survival of the clubs.
For a player, a club is just an employer. For fans a club is something a lot bigger.
Any player at Arsenal who refuses to take a pay cut (12.5% is not much in comparison to the 20% furloughed workers are taking) should never play for the club again.
They would have shown that they do not care for the club. That they only care about their back pocket. That they would rather the club go to the wall, into administration then take a potential 12.5% pay cut.
To bring the 12.5% into perspective, a player earning £22,000 a week would still earn £1m before tax if he agreed to a the pay cut. Who at Arsenal actually earns as “little” as £22k? We are talking about youth team players on the fringes of the first team. Willock, Saka, Ntekitah.
At the top end, of Mesut Ozil took a 12.5% pay cut for 12 month, we would still earn over £15million a year…
It is easy to point the finger are the owners, but it has to be remembered that many owners have already made huge losses, and have other business enterprises that they are also trying to keep afloat during this time.
Arsenal players reported “surprise” shows just how detached they are from the word.
If they refuse to take a pay cut, enforce it on them, breach their contract and open the door for them to leave for nothing.
Any player that loves Arsenal will understand why the club has had to do it. They will stay. Those prima-Donna mercenaries will leave. And Arsenal will be the better for it.