‘Full recovery being some distance away’ – PL Chief Exec gives bleak outlook on potential future threat

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As the coronavirus situation continues to hit businesses hard, the Premier League’s Chief Executive, Richard Masters, has painted a bleak picture for the future of his organisation.

In a letter to the DCMS Committee Chair, Julian Knight MP, seen by CaughtOffside, Masters set out a response to the government’s call for Premier League clubs to stop taking advantage of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to pay non-playing staff who have been furloughed.

“Not only is our industry facing losses now, but to be realistic, we must also base our plans on full recovery being some distance away,” the letter read. “Ultimately, the very heavy losses that we face will have to be dealt with or else Clubs and other enterprises who depend on football for income will go out of business.”

Masters goes on to suggest to Mr. Knight MP that it shouldn’t be seen as a justification for the PL member club’s decisions, but, that the threat is very real and arguably not exaggerated.

What seems fairly clear at this stage is that football will change to some degree, and the extent to which that will be is likely to be determined by how long the pandemic continues.

With the financial consequences likely to be huge for all concerned in any event, football will return at some point but potentially not as we know it.

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