Doncaster Rovers players in “fantastic gesture” as they agree to defer wages until fans return

SENIOR players at Doncaster Rovers have agreed to defer a percentage of their wages until football resumes again in front of spectators.

Doncaster Rovers chief executive Gavin Baldwin

Rovers players and many staff members were placed on furlough leave in early April as the club announced cost-cutting measures amid the coronavirus pandemic.

This latest gesture from players will further assist the League One club as it copes with an extended spell of financial uncertainty.

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More especially with football likely to be staged in front of empty stadiums when it resumes for the remainder of 2020.

A club statement read: “Football faces uncertain times with no clarity yet on when or if the 2019-20 Sky Bet League One season will be completed or when games will be able to be played in front of supporters.

“While Club Doncaster has worked hard to diversify its revenue streams, the business has only been able to bring in a fraction of its usual income and as a result more than 200 staff, including Rovers players and playing staff, have been furloughed.

“This has helped to safeguard the club in the immediacy of this crisis.

“Despite the challenges, Club Doncaster has worked hard to top up its employees’ pay to ensure that every member of the Club Doncaster family can rule out money worries from what is already an extremely difficult time.”

Specifically commenting on deferment agreements by players and warning of tough times ahead, Rovers chief executive officer Gavin Baldwin commented: “We would like to thank our players for their understanding at this time.

“To agree to defer their wages is a fantastic gesture from them and will make a huge difference to the sustainability of our football club.

“A return to football as we know it is clearly some way off and that means our main income stream, ticket sales, will be lost.

“The fact we have always strived to manage the club within its means, coupled with the Government’s assistance packages, have helped us to this point, but moving forward we may have some very difficult decisions to make.

“We are not free from risk in the long term if football is to be played behind closed doors for an extensive period and we have no income streams.

“However, I have been humbled by the actions I have already seen taken by members of our Doncaster Rovers family in the past two months.”

Earlier this week, manager Darren Moore stressed the need for the Premier League to show a duty of care to EFL clubs who are struggling amid their gravest crisis since the collapse of ITV Digital, by offering more financial aid.

He said: “From the top level of the game, they have to help as this is having a huge and massively detrimental effect at clubs in League Two and League One because there is just no revenue coming in.

“I just hope that the powers that are running the game will hopefully see that. It is not us crying over spilt milk, it is just a situation where we know we all need help.”

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