Now it’s businesspeople and billionaire industrialists to show the same generosity.
As a former professional, I am extremely proud of the #PlayersTogether initiative in which the 20 captains of the Premier League organized a multi-million pound donation to the NHS during the darkest hour of the medical emergency.
He showed unprecedented unity among players where rivalries have been set aside to address life and death issues across the country.
While MPs were teaching footballers greed – and earning an additional £ 10,000 to work from home – the beautiful game showed its true colors.
Common sense has always dictated that footballers would do the right thing.
The overwhelming majority come from the working class and they are honest people who appreciate the wealth that comes from reaching the top of the chosen profession.
I was told that Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson was at the forefront of #PlayersTogether conversations.
This shows that he is not only the captain of the best team in the country. In addition to raising the European Cup, winning the Premier League and being an exceptional candidate for the title of footballer of the year, it shows that he is above all a great human being.
A good leader. The kind of guy you’d follow in the trenches.
When Henderson shared a tearful hug with his father after the Champions League final last season, many of us were crying with him because it was a final father-son moment.
Now Henderson and his fellow captains – along with Troy Deeney of Watford, Harry Maguire of Manchester United and Mark Noble of West Ham – have led their teammates on moral ground.
They are doing their part to help the NHS and help their communities fight this terrible virus.
And they show that they will not be pushed back and will show leadership on their own terms.
As I said last week, the Secretary of Health, Matt Hancock, was wrong to distinguish the footballers when his own department failed terribly in terms of testing and to provide front line medical personnel with medical equipment. protection and fans.
In all honesty, Mr. Hancock was answering a direct question about footballers and their wealth.
But I wonder if he’s going to knock on the doorstep now of wealthy businessmen and moguls with offshore bank accounts, to see if they will follow the example of football?
It has not yet been decided how players will pay into the #PlayersTogether fund – weekly, monthly or occasional donations – but it is only fair that this should be done anonymously.
This means that marginal players or young people who have just joined the first team on their first professional contract should not accumulate the same amounts as experienced internationals or big titles with a lot of money.
Not to be confused with an exceptional act of charity, the saga concerning players taking salary reductions or deferring part of their salary remains to be resolved.
Southampton has become the first Premier League club to defer wages – without putting staff on leave – and more will follow.
And I can understand that other Premier League clubs that offer pay cuts for all staff are trying to protect their businesses.
But again, let’s make it clear that “greedy” players are not bad guys in the room.
Players are only paid what clubs are willing to pay them. And if clubs can’t afford to pay £ 200,000 weekly contracts, they shouldn’t be offering them in the first place.
I’m sure players will do whatever it takes to make sure their clubs don’t go down.
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But don’t blame them for negotiating the best deal possible for themselves and their families.
It is wrong to accuse them of being greedy. The bottom line is this: clubs are not required to sign contracts which will then bankrupt them.
In the meantime, I look forward to a seat on the edge of the ring when the next well-known MP targets footballers and teaches them high wages.
After giving themselves a 10% pay rise – well above the rate of inflation – our elected officials pay themselves £ 10,000 more to cover the “expenses” related to working from home.
All this when the NHS and social workers cannot get enough personal protective equipment to keep themselves and the nation safe.
Instead of pointing fingers at football, government ministers may need to better explain to nurses why some of them carry trash bags to fight a deadly virus.