Sheffield United set to place some employees on furlough to safeguard their financial stability
Sheffield United are expected to place a small number of staff on furlough to safeguard the club’s financial stability during the coronavirus crisis, which has forced the suspension of all-top flight competition during its first season back in the Premier League for over a decade.
The Star understands that Bramall Lane’s hierarchy have pledged to ensure those affected, who are all thought to be in non-footballing roles, will continue to receive their full salaries by paying the 20 per cent of their salaries not covered by the Government’s worker retention scheme.
Unlike many of those teams established at the highest level, United do not have the luxury of being able to draw upon huge reserves of cash with new owner HRH Prince Abdullah bin Musa’ad bin Abdulaziz Al Saud choosing to re-invest the money they have received since being promoted last season back into the squad.
Less than 50 full-time employees, who are unable to perform their regular day to day duties following the PL’s decision to place the fixture schedule on hold last month, are believed to be subject to the measure, which has yet to be officially confirmed.
Those casual members of staff set to be placed on furlough will also benefit from United’s decision to top up wage packets.
Languishing in League One when Chris Wilder was appointed in 2016, United have broken their transfer record on numerous occasions following the squad’s rise through the divisions.
Norway international Sander Berge became the most expensive player in their history when he completed a £22m move from Genk in January, with Prince Abdullah readjusting the recruitment budget in order to capture the midfielder.
Scotland centre-forward Oli McBurnie and Lys Mousset, who has represented France at under-21 level, also commanded significant fees when they arrived in South Yorkshire last summer.
Earlier this week, Burnley chairman Mike Garlick revealed the challenges faced by smaller clubs in the PL due to the lack of games and fears about the losses they might incur if the campaign is abolished altogether.
“The fact of the matter is, if we don;t finish the season and there isn’t a clear start date for next season, we, as a club, will run out of money by August,” Garlick said, despite Turf Moor’s reputation for prudent business practice. “That is a fact.”
United were seventh in the table and preparing for an FA Cup quarter-final against Arsenal, which was set to attract a sell-out crowd, when the mass postponements were announced.