Arsenal to axe 55 staff as COVID-19 bites

Premier League giants Arsenal have announced plans to make 55 members of their staff redundant because of the financial impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Gunners’ first-team players and head coach Mikel Arteta agreed to a 12.5% pay cut in April, while the executives also agreed to waive more than a third of their salaries over the next 12 months to cushion the effect of the virus.

And the club says they now face “more significant and longer-lasting reductions in our revenue than we all hoped.”

Arsenal added they did not take the decision to propose redundancies “lightly” and had looked at “every aspect of the club and our expenditure before reaching this point.”

“We know this is upsetting and difficult for our dedicated staff and our focus is on managing this as sensitively as possible,” the club concluded in a statement.

The redundancies are in the football, commercial and administration departments, with the majority coming in the latter two.

There will also be cuts to staff benefits, capital projects and discretionary projects, but investments will continue to be made in the playing staff and Arsenal’s transfer plans are unaffected, the statement noted.

The Gunners beat London rivals Chelsea 2-1 last weekend to win a record 14th FA Cup and qualify for the Europa League next season.

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