Tottenham supporters urge club to ‘do the right thing’ on furlough plan

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April 11, 2020
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    Tottenham players during a penalty shootout

    Tottenham currently sit eighth in the Premier League table

    Tottenham Hotspur Supporters’ Trust (THST) believes “there is still time” for the club to “do the right thing” following their decision to use the government’s furlough scheme.

    On 31 March, the club announced 550 non-playing staff would take a 20% pay cut due to the coronavirus crisis.

    Chairman Daniel Levy said the club will use the government’s furlough scheme in an attempt to “protect jobs”.

    In a lengthy statement, THST urged the club to reverse their decision.

    “This is an unprecedented situation and no-one, including supporters’ organisations, will get everything right from the start,” said the THST.

    “We have made this statement in good faith and remain willing to work with all parties for the best outcome. We still believe there is time for the board… to show they have listened and to do the right thing.”

    Levy, who earned £7m last year – £4m in wages plus £3m for the completion of Tottenham’s stadium move – is among the non-playing directors and employees at the club who will take a cut in salary, initially for April and May.

    Spurs are owned by billionaire Joe Lewis, through his investment firm Tavistock. According to The Sunday Times Rich List in 2019, the 83-year-old has a net worth of £4.358bn.

    Newcastle United, Bournemouth and Norwich City have also announced they will furlough some non-playing staff.

    Premier League leaders Liverpool reversed their decision to place some non-playing staff on temporary leave and apologised to fans following a fierce backlash.

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    In a letter to their fans, chief executive Peter Moore said: “We believe we came to the wrong conclusion last week and are truly sorry for that.”

    Tottenham’s Trust says “mass supporter opinion against these decisions has solidified” in the 10 days since the club announced its intentions to use the government scheme.

    “[It’s] 10 days during which the reputation of our club has repeatedly taken body blows in both national and international media,” the statement added.

    “It’s also been 10 days for us as a Trust of listening to our members, relaying supporter sentiment and urging the club’s board to rethink.”

    THST outlined a list of actions it hoped the club would take, including guaranteeing full salaries to non-playing staff until 1 June, as well as requesting financial transparency.

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