Liverpool will NOT furlough non-playing staff as club perform U-turn

‘We came to the wrong conclusion and are truly sorry for that’: Liverpool announce they will NOT furlough staff as club perform dramatic U-turn after backlash at decision to use tax-payer money

  • Liverpool chief executive Peter Moore revealed the U-turn in a letter to fans
  • Club ‘came to the wrong conclusion’ on decision to furlough non-playing staff
  • The Premier League leaders received a huge backlash for their initial decision
  • The likes of Jamie Carragher and Dietmar Hamann slammed their former club 

Liverpool chief executive Peter Moore has revealed the club have performed a dramatic U-turn on their decision to furlough non-playing staff.

Moore penned a letter to the club’s supporters on Monday evening to clarify the situation, claiming ‘we came to the wrong conclusion’ after they came in for a huge backlash.

The Premier League leaders announced on Saturday that they would be placing around 200 employees on the government’s job retention scheme. 

Liverpool have performed a dramatic U-turn on their decision to furlough non-playing staff

Liverpool chief executive Peter Moore penned a letter to supporters to clarify the situation

The likes of Jamie Carragher and Dietmar Hamann both slammed their former club, while Danny Murphy also joined the chorus on Monday – claiming the decision ‘went against ‘everything the club has built since Bill Shankly.’ 

And after the massive scrutiny they buried themselves under, Liverpool have released a statement claiming they are ‘truly sorry’ for the issues they caused.  

Liverpool’s statement read: ‘We believe we came to the wrong conclusion last week to announce that we intended to apply to the Coronavirus Retention Scheme and furlough staff due to the suspension of the Premier League football calendar, and are truly sorry for that.

‘Our intentions were, and still are, to ensure the entire workforce is given as much protection as possible from redundancy and/or loss of earnings during this unprecedented period.

Liverpool owner John W Henry came in for huge criticism following their initial decision

‘We are therefore committed to finding alternative ways to operate while there are no football matches being played that ensures we are not applying for the government relief scheme.’

Moore went on to admit however that there is ‘great uncertainty and concern’ over Liverpool’s future due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic which has gripped football.

The season has been suspended indefinitely and club’s throughout England are desperately seeking ways to solve their financial issues during the pandemic.

Moore added: ‘But in the spirit of transparency we must also be clear, despite the fact we were in a healthy position prior to this crisis, our revenues have been shut off yet our outgoings remain. And like almost every sector of society, there is great uncertainty and concern over our present and future.

The initial decision undid all the good work Jurgen Klopp’s side have produced this season

‘Like any responsible employer concerned for its workers in the current situation, the Club continues to prepare for a range of different scenarios, around when football can return to operating as it did before the pandemic. 

‘These scenarios range from best case to worst and everything in between.It is an unavoidable truth that several of these scenarios involve a massive downturn in revenue, with correspondingly unprecedented operating losses. Having these vital financial resources so profoundly impacted would obviously negatively affect our ability to operate as we previously have.’  

Sportsmail reported on Monday that owners Fenway Sports Group – run by John W Henry and Tom Werner – are valued at around £5billion.

The club also announced in February that they had produced profits of £42million in the last financial year.

Liverpool had initially followed in the footsteps of Tottenham, Newcastle, Bournemouth and Norwich in putting non-playing staff on furlough. 

More to follow… 

PETER MOORE’S FULL LETTER 

Dear Liverpool supporters

First and foremost on behalf of our ownership, Fenway Sports Group, we would like to emphasise the thoughts and concerns of everyone are with those suffering from the dreadful COVID-19 pandemic and the families of those affected.

We would also recognise and pay tribute to the heroism of the incredible health service and key workers locally, nationally and internationally. All other worries should be placed in that context first.

Allowing for perspective in these unprecedented and harrowing times, it is important to address an issue we, as an organisation, have been involved in since the weekend.

We have consulted with a range of key stakeholders as part of a process aimed at achieving the best possible outcome for all concerned. A range of possible scenarios were considered, including but not restricted to: applying to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme which pays 80% of salary and guaranteeing the 20% payment; applying to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme with a guarantee to reimburse monies received at a later date and, thirdly, finding an alternative means to cover our furlough costs.

It is as a direct result of this extensive consultation and our own internal deliberations at various levels throughout the Club that we have opted to find alternative means despite our eligibility to apply for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

We believe we came to the wrong conclusion last week to announce that we intended to apply to the Coronavirus Retention Scheme and furlough staff due to the suspension of the Premier League football calendar, and are truly sorry for that.

Our intentions were, and still are, to ensure the entire workforce is given as much protection as possible from redundancy and/or loss of earnings during this unprecedented period.

We are therefore committed to finding alternative ways to operate while there are no football matches being played that ensures we are not applying for the government relief scheme. 

We would like to acknowledge the great army of staff and casual workers who work tirelessly to ensure Liverpool is a club that operates to the highest of standards.

But in the spirit of transparency we must also be clear, despite the fact we were in a healthy position prior to this crisis, our revenues have been shut off yet our outgoings remain. And like almost every sector of society, there is great uncertainty and concern over our present and future.

Like any responsible employer concerned for its workers in the current situation, the Club continues to prepare for a range of different scenarios, around when football can return to operating as it did before the pandemic. These scenarios range from best case to worst and everything in between.

It is an unavoidable truth that several of these scenarios involve a massive downturn in revenue, with correspondingly unprecedented operating losses. Having these vital financial resources so profoundly impacted would obviously negatively affect our ability to operate as we previously have.

We are engaged in the process of exploring all avenues within our scope to limit the inevitable damage. We thank the many amazing people in our club, at all levels, who are committed to helping us do just that, despite the complexity and unpredictability in the world and our industry.

We would also like to take the opportunity to thank those who have engaged with us in a productive fashion, none more so than our supporters, their representatives, particularly Spirit of Shankly, the Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson, Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, local MPs Dan Carden and Ian Byrne and many other individuals who we have had much valued dialogue with.

Stay Safe




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