England's Football Association (FA) has announced up to 30 per cent temporary pay cuts for its highest earners and proposed staff paid more than £50,000 yearly accept a reduction to mitigate financial issues caused the coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19 has claimed the lives of over 70,000 people worldwide since its emergence in China late last year, impacting everyday life for almost everyone on the planet.
Top-level sport has consequently been interrupted and the knock-on effect of that is financial strain on leagues, clubs and governing bodies.
Some Premier League clubs have taken advantage of the United Kingdom government's furlough scheme, which allows members of the workforce affected by the pandemic to claim 80 per cent of their wages – up to £2,500 a month – from the state.
The FA is yet to follow suit, with the likes of Tottenham and Liverpool attracting widespread criticism for using the scheme, instead proposing staff earning more than £50,000 a year accept a reduction of 7.5 per cent, while the highest earners – including the likes of England manager Gareth Southgate – face a cut of up to 30 per cent as the organisation predicts a financial impact that could exceed £150million.
A statement from FA CEO Mark Bullingham read: "We've taken an immediate and significant financial impact due to the postponement of England internationals, FA Cup matches and Wembley events, and there is currently no clear timescale on when they will return.
"The total financial impact is currently forecast to be around £100m, but it could easily exceed £150m depending on the duration of the government's necessary medical measures.
"Along with many other organisations across the country, we are currently reviewing our financial model during this challenging period. We want to take prudent and appropriate steps to help protect and support the FA and our employees during this unpredictable time.
"We are proposing that all employees earning £50,000 or more per annum will take a temporary pay reduction of 7.5 per cent. In the spirit of those on higher salaries taking the greater responsibility, the senior management team have agreed to cut their pay by 15 per cent with the highest earners in the organisation agreeing to reduce their pay by up to 30 per cent.
"We are also looking into what options are available to us through the government's furlough scheme as a contingency plan, while we continue to plan for the return of football, once it is safe to do so.
"These are extraordinary and challenging times and we do not take these decisions lightly. However, as an organisation we will support each other as best we can."