Football shutdown: Money-saving discussions continue at Rotherham United

Football shutdown: Money-saving discussions continue at Rotherham United

By David Beddows | 24/04/2020

Football shutdown: Money-saving discussions continue at Rotherham United



CONVERSATIONS are continuing at Rotherham United to find ways to ease the strain on the club's finances during the shutdown.

A wage sacrifice by players, management and coaches is one of the options after last week's recommendation from the EFL and the PFA that players in Leagues One and Two agree a pay deferral of up to 25 per cent for April as part of the game's attempts to get to grips with the slump in income caused by the pandemic.

The terms mean no player would see his wage reduced to below £2,500 a month.
Those earning less than that would be paid in full.

Clubs in the bottom two divisions have agreed to open their accounts to show how deep the financial implications of the coronavirus crisis could go.

The  PFA has requested that clubs including Rotherham United forward information to independent accountants to give a more accurate assessment of the scale of the cuts required to get through the difficulties.
Approaching two months since the Millers played their previous match away to Rochdale, there is still no sign when football will be deemed safe enough to resume.

Strong season...but  the Millers' promotion push is on hold.

Although there is still a desire across the game to play to completion, the pressure to either declare the 2019/20 season null and void or decide outcomes on current league positions or on a points average is likely to increase the longer the shutdown goes on. Rotherham occupy the second automatic promotion place in League One behind Coventry with nine games to go.

No matter what happens, the Millers expect to be operating in a much quieter transfer market this summer as a result of the coronavirus.

With so much uncertainty surrounding the professional game, survival is the immediate goal for clubs in the lower divisions.

Trimming wages bills has become a priority over future recruitment, causing a big impact when the transfer window eventually reopens.

Millers manager Paul Warne said: “I can see a lot of lower league clubs doing wage deferrals to help their cash flow and in the summer there is hardly going to be any trade.

“There are something like 600 players out of contract in the summer, so that will have a consequence on them because a lot will get released because clubs won't be able to afford their wages even if they wanted to.

“I think you will see squad sizes reduced and I presume there will be some tighter governing from the EFL regarding Financial Fair Play.

“I also presume going forward there will be parts in contracts to take account of a second, third or fourth wave of coronavirus in case clubs get hit again further down the line.”

The EFL believes the remaining games could be completed in 56 days once the Government decides it is safe to resume.