Everton have announced that the board of directors and backroom and playing staff have voluntarily agreed to take wage reductions and deferrals.
The club have said that, for the next three months, members of the first team squad have agreed to deferrals of up to half of their salary as they seek to ease the financial strain caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, the board of directors, together with manager Carlo Ancelotti, his backroom staff and other non-playing employees of the club have agreed similar reductions or deferrals of up to 30 per cent.
In an email sent to supporters on Tuesday evening, Everton stressed that everyone taking a wage reduction or deferral has done so of their own volition.
Everton’s chief executive, Denise Barrett-Baxendale, hailed the move in a statement posted on the club’s website, saying:
“I would like to express my sincere thanks to every single one of them for demonstrating such integrity and honour in helping the Everton Family through this challenging time.
“This remarkable show of unity has enabled the Club to maintain the salaries of all Everton and Everton in the Community full and part-time employees – all of whom have remained in full employment throughout this period - and enabled the Club to continue to pay its directly engaged matchday and non-matchday casual staff since our Club lockdown began on 13 March.
“It has also been vital in ensuring we have been able to deliver the ‘Blue Family’ campaign on the scale we have. The campaign has been providing vital support to thousands of vulnerable people in the community. Indeed, more than 6,000 families have benefited from that support, with thousands of people in crisis also receiving food parcels and other essential emergency supplies.
“It has been incredibly humbling for me and my colleagues to witness the overwhelming generosity from our supporters, with many thousands choosing to donate to this important campaign.
“Anybody who has made a donation – whether financial or through the giving of their time – has my deepest heartfelt thanks for such incredible selflessness. Such kindness has put food on the table for families who cannot afford to eat, provided shelter to those at risk of homelessness and extended a lifeline for mental health support services to those who have needed it.”
Barrett-Baxendale also revealed that, following providing supporters and lounge members with the option to donate the remaining value of their 2019-20 season tickets to the ‘Blue Family’ campaign, more than £400,000 was raised as a result.
Majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri and chairman Bill Kenwright then matched this total between them, with each donating £200,000 of their own money to bring the final sum to £800,000.
Everton returned to training in late May ahead of the Premier League’s restart on June 17. The Blues’ first game back in action will be the Merseyside derby, although Goodison Park has yet to be confirmed as the match venue following a police request to move it to a neutral ground.
A decision on this matter could be made on Wednesday, following a meeting between a Liverpool City Council safety advisory group on Monday.