Coronavirus and sport: Chelsea's first-team squad will not take pay cut

By Alistair MagowanBBC Sport
Chelsea players
Chelsea players have been supporting various charities during the pandemic

Chelsea's first-team players will not be taking a pay cut to contribute to the club during the coronavirus pandemic, but will "focus on further supporting other charitable causes".

It had been reported that the men's team would take a 10% cut this month.

But a statement on the club websiteexternal-link said "extensive talks" had been held to discuss how the team could contribute.

The Chelsea board have told the players to continue to support charities, including the NHS.

"At this time, the men's first team will not be contributing towards the club financially and instead the board have directed the team to focus their efforts," the statement read.

"We are grateful to the team for having played their role in assisting the club with community activities as well as all the charitable causes they have been supporting in their respective home countries and through the Players Together initiative supporting the NHS."

Talks will continue between the club and players - who are being represented in the discussions by captain Cesar Azpilicueta.

The players had offered to take a cut lower than the figure of 10% reported in the media - but the club say there has been no falling-out between the club and players at this stage.

Chelsea have also confirmed they will not be using the government's job retention scheme and are paying all staff in full.

"We are not planning any general redundancies or furloughs for our full-time staff who are continuing to be paid 100% of their current wages," the statement continued.

"We are continuing our current level of financial and other support to our professional women players and also to our women's academy programmes."

Arsenal's first-team players and head coach Mikel Arteta have agreed a 12.5% pay cut, while Liverpool, Tottenham and Bournemouth reversed their decisions to furlough staff.

Newcastle United were the first Premier League club to place their non-playing staff on temporary leave and Norwich have also put staff on the job retention scheme.

Chelsea have also outlined that they will credit season ticket holders for any games played behind closed doors for the remainder of the season and reimburse those who had booked non-refundable travel to the postponed Champions League tie at Bayern Munich last month.