La Liga president Javier Tebas says Spanish soccer clubs have no option but to reduce players’ salaries next season due to the financial impact of Covid-19.
The Spanish season has halted since mid-March and even though matches are due to restart in June without spectators, La Liga still estimates clubs will lose a combined £300 million in lost revenue due to this disruption.
To cope with the steep income losses and minimize job losses, many clubs including Atletico Madrid and Barcelona introduced temporary pay cuts to players and staff during the national state of emergency, although Tebas believes further cuts will have to be made.
“Clubs will have to reduce the salaries of their players, there’s no other remedy,” Javier Tebas said at a virtual conference organised by the Ibelo-American Institute for sporting law, quoted by Spanish newspaper AS on Tuesday.
Spanish clubs spent a huge amount of money last year on transfers including Barcelona’s £120 million for Antoine Griezmann from Atletico Madrid, who in turn splashed £126 million on Portuguese forward Joao Felix.
But Tebas said clubs would have to significantly reduce transfer activity this year in order to comply with the league’s strict salary controls, which dictate how much money teams can spend according to their projected revenue.
“Clubs now have squads that will exceed the salary limit for next season and teams are going to have to look far more towards youth football and their academies because transfers that exceed that limit will not be allowed, it’s impossible,” he added.
“I don’t think there will be many transfers next season, in Spain or anywhere else. The current situation will not allow that. Teams will either have to reduce footballers’salaries or sign fewer or cheaper players.”