EDDIE HOWE paved the way today for the Premier League’s long-awaited response to the Covid-19 crisis by becoming the first prominent figure to cut wages.
While the PFA continued to procrastinate over a uniform donation of player salaries, the Bournemouth boss voluntarily agreed to give up a “significant” portion of his package of £ 4 million a year during this uncertain period.
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This comes after Prem clubs and stars have been widely criticized for failing to make proportional contributions given their mega-wealthy bank balances as coronavirus ravages society.
The fact that Tottenham and Newcastle rely on the taxpayer for help with non-football staff on leave despite their multimillion dollar profits has left a particularly sour taste.
Bournemouth confirmed today that they are temporarily putting a number of employees into all areas of the club for a minimum of three weeks.
But the hope is that more managers and players will emulate Howe, including assistant Jason Tindall, technical director Richard Hughes and Cherries executive director Neill Blake have also followed suit.
And that Gordon Taylor will stop dragging the heels of the PFA and come to an agreement for lower wages for players in the coming days.
A statement from Cherries said, “There is no script for times like this. No tactics and no set to find a winning formula.
“But as a board of directors, we are continually looking for ways to secure the future of the club and our employees when the season returns.
“These measures were taken to preserve the club’s financial stability during such an uncertain period, not only in football but for businesses in all industries around the world. “
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The holding of the south coast promises to supplement 100% of the salaries of staff on leave during this period, all benefits, including pension contributions, also being paid by the club.
Each department was affected, some more than others depending on the responsibilities exercised.
Those who work in the club shop or hotel business, for example, have been more affected as there is currently virtually no work to be done.
Training courses are offered to people on leave – a member of the media department is funded to learn a new language in their spare time.
Meanwhile, Howe said today that Artur Boruc and the four members of the first team who self-isolated two weeks ago after showing symptoms are “very well and fully recovered.”
But he acknowledged his fears about the mental well-being of the players during the lockout.
The 42-year-old added, “Usually you have a lot of control over player training, general health, even their food – getting two meals a day with us.
“Suddenly you lose all contact with them. It’s more mental well-being right now, it’s probably my biggest concern.
“Guys with families will probably have their busy days, like mine, with their children – having people around the house and not feeling isolated.
“But it’s the singles, maybe the people who don’t have a wife or girlfriend and who certainly don’t have kids. These are the ones that worry me the most right now. “