Coronavirus Outbreak: FC Barcelona players to take 70 percent wage cut, captain Lionel Messi announces on social media
FC Barcelona players have announced they will be taking a 70 percent wage cut to ensure it creates enough funds to pay rest of the club employees.
Barcelona captain Lionel Messi has released a statement, as have other members of the squad, announcing the team will take a 70 percent wage cut to ensure rest of the employees at the club are fully paid. Football in Europe and the rest of the world has come to a standstill due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Clubs around Europe such as Juventus, Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Borussia Moenchengladbach have announced pay cuts for their players. There emerged reports in Spanish media that Barcelona players had denied taking pay cuts. But the club announced the cuts would go ahead regardless.
"Among the measures adopted, it's worth noting those related to the workplace are motivated by the need to adapt the contractual obligations of the club staff to the new and temporary circumstances that we are experiencing," FC Barcelona had earlier said in a statement.
"It is a reduction of the working day, imposed by the circumstances and the protection measures carried out, and, as a consequence, the proportional reduction of the remuneration provided for in the respective contracts," it added.
On Monday, Messi explained the situation on the pay cuts and the delay in making an official statement.
"Much has been written and said about the Barcelona first team in relation to the players' salaries during this state of alarm. Before going any further, we want to make it clear that we were always willing to reduce our salaries because we understand perfectly that we are in an exceptional situation. We, as players, are always here to help the the club when they ask. Sometimes, we have done things on our own initiative during times when we felt it necessary and important," said Messi.
"It didn’t surprise us that the club needed to analyse things to try to do something to relieve some pressure and it is something we were always clear we would do. In fact, if the agreement came a little late is it because we have been looking for the formula to help the club and also the workers of the club at this difficult time."
"For our part, the moment has arrived to say that the cut will be 70% of our wage during the state of alarm. We will also help out the club in order for the workers to be paid 100% of their wages."
— Luis Suarez (@LuisSuarez9) March 30, 2020
"If we didn’t speak until now, it’s because the priority was to to find solutions to help the club and to see who the most affected were during this situation. We don’t want to sign off without giving a massive salute and our strength to all of the cules who are going through a bad moment in these difficult times and those waiting patiently in their homes until this crisis is over. Soon, we will come out on the other side of this and we will all join together."
Spain entered into lockdown on 14 March, with citizens allowed to leave their homes only for essentials. There are more than 85,000 cases and 7,300 deaths in Spain – biggest death tally behind Italy.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official said that with these additions, the tally of COVID-19 cases rose to 7,35,770, while the death toll climbed to 16,033.
The team was jeered by many of the 27,000 fans at Camp Nou Stadium after the final whistle, and it didn't take long before critics started to attack coach Ronald Koeman for relinquishing the club's traditional passing game.
Ronald Koeman is adamant Barcelona will be better soon but he heads to Granada in La Liga on Monday under pressure, with his team accused not just of losing but of losing their identity.