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Sunderland have placed a number of non-playing staff on furlough leave as the club attempts to deal with the suspension of the EFL.
The Premier League and EFL announced that they would be postponing all games until the 3rd of April at the very earliest until the FA decided to extend that break until the end of next month, but even then it is not confirmed that the deadline could be pushed back any further.
Football clubs are having to deal with this during any way possible with many clubs severely missing the cash injections that home games bring into the club’s overall budget. Ticket sales, food and drink doesn’t seem like a huge amount of income but to clubs in the bottom two tiers of the game, it can be such a hard hit when that revenue doesn’t come in.
Sunderland are just one of the clubs who have had to take measures to cope with the financial struggles that the recent health pandemic has brought them. The club have been forced into putting large numbers of their non-playing staff onto furlough which will see them resume their jobs when it is safe for them to do so. The workers will not be without money though as the British government will pay 80% of their wages with the Black Cats making up the rest of it.
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The club produced a statement earlier today which was reported by ChronicleLive, it read: “Due to the ongoing pandemic, Sunderland AFC have recently placed a number of the club’s non-playing staff on furlough leave.
“With football suspended until at least the 30 April, and many members of staff unable to carry out their roles as a result, the club has taken the decision to utilise the government’s newly announced wage support system.
“This decision will not only ensure staff continue to be paid, but also help ensure that as many jobs as possible remain protected throughout the ongoing lockdown.”
With the club not receiving potentially hundreds of thousands of pounds through matchday revenues, they appear to have no other option with a host of other companies having to go through similar procedures at this very difficult time.
It is never nice to see anyone lose their job due to a health pandemic, but it appears that Sunderland had no over choice. The only positive for those staff members at the club is that they will retain their jobs once the lockdown is over and the football has returned. For a club like Sunderland to have to take these measures must make over football clubs worry, as they are one of the biggest and most financially backed clubs in League One.
Our local clubs really suffer when they are forced to lose large chunks of expected revenue and sadly it is only a matter of time before other clubs follow the same steps that Sunderland have taken.