Manchester City have confirmed they will not be furloughing employees using tax payer money – after Premier League leaders Liverpool were criticised for their coronavirus stance.
On Saturday, the Reds became the fifth top-flight club to announce that some non-playing staff would be stood down, with 80 per cent of their wages covered by the Government and the remaining salaries topped up by the club.
Tottenham, Newcastle, Norwich and Bournemouth had already made similar announcements, which have attracted criticism from those who believe the scheme is not being used as intended by organisations with large revenues and huge wage bills for players.
It is understood City’s stance was discussed, taken and approved at board level last week, before Liverpool’s position became public.
A statement read: “We can confirm, following a decision by the chairman and board last week, that Manchester City will not be utilising the UK Government’s coronavirus job retention scheme (government funded furloughing).
“We remain determined to protect our people, their jobs and our business whilst at the same time doing what we can to support our wider community at this most challenging time for everybody.”
Former players Jamie Carragher and Stan Collymore turned on Liverpool after the Premier League leaders became the fifth top-flight club to announce they have furloughed some non-playing staff during the coronavirus pandemic.
Liverpool, who in February announced pre-tax profits of £42million for 2018-19, will top up the public money received from the government to ensure the affected staff receive their full salaries.
Carragher retweeted the club’s statement and wrote: “Jurgen Klopp showed compassion for all at the start of this pandemic, senior players heavily involved in @premierleague players taking wage cuts. Then all that respect & goodwill is lost, poor this @LFC”
Collymore was even more forthright as he wrote: “I don’t know of any Liverpool fan of any standing that won’t be anything other than disgusted at the club for furloghing staff.
“It’s just plain f****** wrong.
“Fellow football fans, furlough is for small business staff to keep those small businesses from going bump!
“Every Premier League owner has serious cash, and make money from skyrocketing values of clubs, so what aren’t you getting about YOUR owners dipping into THEIR pocket?