PL clubs should not be granted relief under the Government's Job Retention Scheme

PL clubs should not be granted relief under the Government's Job Retention Scheme

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Gaurav Sharma started this petition to Tottenham Hotspur and

On 31st March 2020, Tottenham Hotspur FC announced that they would be applying for a government scheme that will see the government cover 80% of the wages of their non-playing football staff. Director Daniel Levy will be among those who will take an initial 20% pay cut for April and May, after which the situation will be reviewed.

When Rishi Sunak announced the government’s job retention scheme during this coronavirus pandemic he did not intend it to be exploited by rich football clubs such as Tottenham Hotspur who made record revenues of £461m in 2018/2019. The government has made tremendous effort in assisting small businesses who are the backbone of the UK economy. Many of these businesses require immediate working capital to survive for the next few months whereas football clubs like Tottenham Hotpsur are using the scheme to ensure their top millionaire football players do not have to forgo any salary while not playing any football.

Newcastle United, Norwich City, Liverpool FC and AFC Bournemouth have also applied for the scheme, a move which has been condemned by politicians on both sides of the spectrum.

David Lammy, Labour MP for Tottenham has called on footballers to "shoulder the burden" as top flight clubs begin to furlough non-playing staff rather than those on modest salaries in cleaning, catering or security having to be supported by the taxpayer.

Conservative Julian Knight, chair of the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, accused English football of acting in a "moral vacuum" whilst Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said that footballers should "be the first ones to sacrifice their salary".

The Premier League, EFL and players' union the Professional Footballers Association are in talks over a possible wage deferral for players. However, the government can act to ensure its schemes are not abused.

This petition is for the government to consider the job retention scheme should not be applicable to premier league football clubs where tax payer money will be used to assist sustaining the salaries of highly paid football players. The government should also protect employees who are at risk of losing their jobs where clubs can afford job retention with player wage deferrals or reductions.

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