League One and Two clubs 'threatening mass furloughing of players'

Football League bosses are desperate to reach salary cuts agreement with the PFA amid concerns a no deal will plunge clubs further into a financial crisis and could result in hasty ‘free-for-all’ deals with players

  • Talks between the EFL and PFA over salary cuts have remained at an impasse 
  • Some clubs want it resolved before they have to process this month’s wages 
  • A no deal could result in club executives making hasty deals with their players 
  • Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID

Football League bosses fear they will be plunged deeper into financial crisis within the week if stalling salary talks are not resolved.

Sportsmail understands some clubs are scheduled to start processing this month’s wages next Friday, with the prospect of that huge outlay pushing a number closer to the edge.

The EFL have been given additional time to negotiate a collective deal with the PFA over deferrals and cuts but those discussions have remained at an impasse. 

Football League clubs will reportedly inform the PFA that they may struggle to pay April wages

A lack of resolution before the end of next week will likely see clubs take individual action, potentially further fragmenting the three divisions.

Despite a collection of clubs already furloughing playing staff – with a number having done so privately – hope has been for a unilateral agreement with the PFA.

That has yet not come to pass and sources have disclosed to Sportsmail that their payroll information needs to be ratified on or around the end of next week.

The prospect of no deal leaves executives with the scenario whereby they may have to come to hasty deals with their own players in what has been described as a ‘possible free-for-all’. 

Their ultimatum to PFA chief Gordon Taylor may happen if an agreement is not reached on cuts

The EFL clubs are set to meet on Wednesday for an update on negotiations but there is pessimism at a decision given the PFA’s hard-line stance up until now.

While Premier League solidarity payments have been advanced ahead of time, there are worries that paying this month’s wages in full could prove catastrophic.

Meanwhile, the status of loan players are representing an added complication over the issue of furloughing, with some clubs unsure of whether they or the parent club would be responsible for wages.

The EFL told clubs this week to give players time off until mid-May with the view of returning to games behind closed doors and completing the season within 56 days from the end of June.

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