Coronavirus: 'Astonished' Hamann questions Liverpool's morals after furlough decision

Daniel Fowler
April 6, 2020

Liverpool's American owners, John Henry and Tom Werner, are estimated to be worth around two billion pounds, but rather than cover the cost of the staff's wages themselves, they have taken advantage of the Government Coronavirus Job Retention scheme.

The Reds announced on Saturday that they follow Premier League rivals Tottenham, Norwich, Bournemouth and Newcastle by utilising the Government furlough scheme.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said he was reduced to tears by video footage of people singing You'll Never Walk Alone to medical staff in a hospital with patients being treated during the pandemic, and the club have said the situation regarding nonplaying staff is "ongoing".

The news was not well received as former players Jamie Carragher and Dietmar Hamann slammed the club on Twitter for its immoral action.

In being furloughed, the vast proportion of financial responsibility for Liverpool's staff will now fall on the British government, and not Liverpool.

A Liverpool statement read: "Even prior to the decision on staff furloughing, there was a collective commitment at senior levels of the club - on and off the pitch - with everyone working towards a solution that secures jobs for employees of the club during this unprecedented crisis. One was given in good faith saying for us the priority is LFC staff being paid 100% of their regular wage.

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While some cases of repiratory illness have been reported at the home, no new cases of COVID-19 have been reported. Public health revealed that a staff member at Selkirk Regional Health Centre has tested positive for COVID-19.

Premier League Burnley could run out of money by August if the season does not resume by then, club chairman Mike Garlick said on Saturday, three weeks after the COVID-19 pandemic forced a suspension.

'During this crisis, many workers have lost or will lose their livelihoods. We were told this would happen and we made a statement.

'Many of our members and the committee have raised concerns that the club intend to use taxpayer's money to pay staff.

Tottenham and Liverpool - who together made more than £150m profit according to their most recent accounts - have come in for particular criticism for their decision to furlough staff. It is an easy target for the authorities.

Premier League clubs met on Friday to discuss the prospects for completing the season, and the possibility of players taking a 30 per cent wage reduction was also discussed.

"I don't know of any Liverpool fan of any standing that won't be anything other than disgusted at the club for furloghing staff".

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