Former Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has hit out at the Premier League for publicly stating that players should take a 30% wage cut while football fixtures are not being played.
England’s all-time leading goalscorer has raised questions as to why footballers are being singled for criticism, and feels players should be treated as individuals, rather than as a homogenous group:
“How the past few days have played out is a disgrace,” added England’s all-time leading goalscorer. I get that players are well paid and could give up money. But this should be getting done on a case-by-case basis.”
“Clubs should be sitting down with each player and explaining what savings it needs to survive. Players would accept that. One player might say, ‘I can afford a 30%’; another might say, ‘I can only afford 5%’.”
“Personally, I’d have no problem with some of us paying more. I don’t think that would cause any dressing room problems. Whatever way you look at it, we’re easy targets.”
Rooney has made a bold decision to speak out, but it is a subject which needs to be talked about. Clubs are the ones making decisions to furlough staff in order to cut costs, and that is down to the boards, rather than the players who have binding contracts with their teams.
However, these are exceptional circumstances, so while it is unhelpful for the Premier League to put pressure on them to take salary cuts, players will need to come to an agreement with their clubs in order to help their employers stay out of financial trouble.