Tottenham have confirmed they have reversed their decision to put the club’s non-playing staff on furlough amid the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
Last month, Spurs revealed they have taken advantage of the government’s furloughing scheme as a result of the financial difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chairman Daniel Levy was heavily criticised for his decision not to pay workers in full, especially after Liverpool reversed their decision to furlough staff.
But now, Tottenham have replicated Liverpool by performing a U-turn, confirming the affected non-playing staff will be fully paid for the next two months. The club’s directors, meanwhile, will still take pay cuts.
The statement on the club’s official website failed to load at the time of writing, likely because so many people were clicking on the story. It was, however, relayed by the London Evening Standard as follows:
“In our last update we said we would keep our position under review, especially in the context of revised budgets and cost-cutting. Having done so we have decided that all non-playing staff, whether full-time, casual or furloughed, will receive 100 per cent of their pay for April and May. Only the Board will take salary reductions.
“We are acutely aware that many supporters were against the decision we made regarding furloughing staff who could not carry out their jobs from home – due to the nature of their work – and our intention to apply, if applicable, for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), a scheme designed to ensure that jobs and employment rights are protected.
“Indeed we have seen opposition from fans to fellow Premier League clubs accessing the CJRS too. This once again underlines that we bear different pressures to other businesses, many of whom have and will continue to apply for support from the scheme as the Government intended.
“In view of supporter sentiment regarding the scheme, it is now not our intention to make use of the current CJRS that runs until the end of May. We shall consult with stakeholders, including the Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust with whom we have been in dialogue over the past week and who share our desire to protect jobs, should circumstances change going forward.”
Levy went on to emphasise that the criticism the club received for furloughing staff was a big factor in the decision to reverse the initial pay cuts.
He said: “The criticism the Club has received over the last week has been felt all the more keenly because of our track record of good works and our huge sense of responsibility to care for those that rely on us, particularly locally.
“It was never our intent, as custodians, to do anything other than put measures in place to protect jobs whilst the Club sought to continue to operate in a self-sufficient manner during uncertain times.
“We regret any concern caused during an anxious time and hope the work our supporters will see us doing in the coming weeks, as our stadium takes on a whole new purpose, will make them proud of their Club.”
Spurs manager Jose Mourinho has also come under fire of late for putting on a small training session in a public park. The club’s fans will be hoping this is the end of any controversy until the season resumes.