Wage deferrals have "got to come from the top end of the pyramid" claims former Football League manager

Friday, March 27th, 2020 2:38pm

Former Blackpool, Sunderland, Bradford and Leeds United manager Simon Grayson hopes in the future some Premier League players will accept wage deferrals to help lower league clubs

Leeds United yesterday announced that the club's players, coaching staff and senior management had volunteered to take a wage deferral due to the impact the COVID-19 pandemic was having. 

Leeds, who currently sit top of the Championship, say the decision will enable all 272 full-time, non-football staff continue to be paid.

Football in the Championship, along with the Premier League, League One and League Two, has been suspended until 30th April at the earliest due to the coronavirus.

This comes after fellow Championship side Birmingham City have reportedly asked some of their players to take a wage cut. 

As reported in the Telegraph: "Players earning over £6,000 a week at Birmingham have been requested to take a 50% deduction in salary for the next four months, in correspondence sent to agents which has been seen by Telegraph Sport.

"Birmingham's board have asked players to accept a cut of half their monthly wages until June this year, with the salaries to be paid back in four instalments when the football season resumes."

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United's move has garnered widespread support among the footballing community as it ensures non-playing staff will continue to be paid during those tough times. Speaking about other clubs potentially having players defer their wages, ex-Leeds manager Simon Grayson believes these moves need to start at the very top of the football pyramid. 

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"I think if there is gonna be deferrals of wages, then I think it really has got to come from the top end of the pyramid to start with that can, and people in the governing bodies, can put money into the lower leagues.

"And yes, football's a fantastic industry but lads in League One and League Two are not earning anywhere near the amount of money that players in the Championship, and especially in the Premiership, are doing. They go out week in and week out really to pay the mortgage and have a normal life as such; yes they still get paid more than the normal person on the streets, but not anywhere near what the Premiership players are earning. 

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"So somewhere down the line, hopefully there is going to be Premier League players that are going to be taking deferrals that maybe will go into a pot which will maybe come down the football pyramid. Or the Premier League or all the governing bodies decide they need to move some of this money to help the lower leagues and more so the people that are behind the scenes, it's not just the players. 

"But it's more so the cleaners, the administrators, the people that are just there because they love working at football clubs and are not earning a great deal of money. 

"So hopefully people can see that whatever money they can defer, and they will get it back surely over the next period of time, that there are people are far worse off than professional footballers at the top riches of this division and the Premier League." 

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