Manchester United players yesterday became the first Premier League stars to slash their pay and they will now donate millions to the NHS, MailOnline can reveal.
Old Trafford stars earning up to £375,000-a-week have agreed to forgo 30 per cent of their wages for one month on the proviso that the money is used to benefit hospitals and health centres throughout Manchester in the fight against the coronavirus.
Captain Harry Maguire was approached by chairman Ed Woodward about the idea, and the England defender opened up the initiate to the rest of the senior squad, who are believed to have overwhelmingly agreed.Advertisement
The decision came as a row over footballers’ pay erupted with Gary Lineker yesterday defending those who have not taken a cut during the coronavirus crisis after Health Secretary Matt Hancock urged them to support club staff who are being furloughed at the taxpayers’ expense.
The Match of the Day host, who will donate two months of his £1.75million BBC salary to the British Red Cross, believes that Premier League stars should not be vilified yet saying: ‘I think a lot of footballers will do something’.
Many football fans are irate and have accused millionaire star players of ‘living in a bubble’ while club staff who serve them through the season are being put out of work while football is cancelled due to coronavirus.
Spurs, whose owner Joe Lewis is worth £4.5billion and pays most players between £70,000 and £200,000-a-week, has furloughed non-playing staff along with Premier League rivals Newcastle, Norwich and Bournemouth. Shop workers, security staff, cleaners and catering staff will now be paid 80 per cent of their salary up to £2,500-a-month by the taxpayer when club stars remain on multi-million pound salaries.