With concerns over the impact of coronavirus on women’s football growing stronger, a number of Premier League Clubs have stated their commitment to ensuring their sides are suitably supported during these unprecedented times.
Last week Reading became the first top-flight side to furlough its players, which divided opinion and prompted many to question whether other clubs might take similar actions in the face of huge financial losses.
AFC Fylde, who competed in the third-tier of women’s football, have become the first women’s team to dissolve, and some premier clubs have already announced losses in the millions. World Players Union- Fifpro also raised concerns in April when they said women’s football faced “concrete risks.”
Whilst the FA is said to be in the process of providing support for teams affected, other top clubs including both Manchester teams, Tottenham, Liverpool and Chelsea told Sportsmail that they did not plan to follow in the footsteps of Reading.
Both Manchester City and Manchester United told the Daily Mail that they remain committed to supporting their women’s sides, whilst Chelsea echoed this statement, and promised to continue with their “'current level of financial and other support' to their women's team and academy programmes.”
Bristol City’s backroom staff have taken pay cuts, but this is in accordance with those part of the men’s setup who have taken equivalent pay-reductions.
At present, the majority of Premier League sides have issued strict individual fitness regimes to players in order to keep fit if the season does continue at some point in the future. Though these are undoubtedly tough times, with the FA offering guidance regarding contractual matters and funding opportunities, it appears that WSL clubs are doing all in their power to manage the situation as well as possible.
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