Arsenal to make 55 staff redundant over COVID-19 impact

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A general view of a corner flag before Arsenal’s Premier League match against Watford at the Emirates Stadium, London, England – July 26, 2020. /REUTERS/Neil Hall

Arsenal Football Club has announced plans to make 55 staff redundant because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has hit sports hard.

The London-based club said in a statement in Wednesday that its sources of income had been hit following the outbreak of the disease and the health protocols that were laid out in efforts to curb its spread.

“Our main sources of income have all reduced significantly. Revenue from broadcasters, matchday and commercial activities have all been hit severely and these impacts will continue into at least the forthcoming 2020/21 season,” the statement read in part.

“Our aim has been to protect the jobs and base salaries of our people for as long as we possibly can. Unfortunately, we have now come to the point where we are proposing 55 redundancies.”

The COVID-19 pandemic forced sporting activities to be halted for long periods amid uncertainty regarding the health crisis.

English football was suspended for more than 100 days, and even after the top leagues resumed in July, fans were not allowed into stadiums.

Some of Arsenal’s first-team players and head coach Mikel Arteta agreed a 12.5% pay cut in April as the clubs saw its income streams affected.

“These proposed changes are ultimately about ensuring we take this great football club forward, creating the right organisation for a post-COVID world, and ensuring we have the resources to return to competing effectively at the top of the game here and in Europe,” the club statement said.

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