Premiership Rugby clubs weigh up asking players to take 25% pay cut | Sport

Premiership Rugby clubs are considering asking players to take a 25 per cent pay cut while the league is suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Following meetings this week, a number of clubs fear only radical moves will keep finances in check, with the league currently shut down until 24 April.

Wage reductions would require agreement from the players due to the nature of their contracts and the Rugby Players’ Association is seeking clarification over plans on behalf of its members.

“Our advice is that players hear what the clubs have to say and then we will consider a collective position across the league,” the RPA chief executive, Damian Hopley, told BBC Sport.

English rugby’s governing body the Rugby Football Union (RFU) is yet to outline any detailed stance amid the pandemic, having pledged in a recent statement to “provide detailed updates on the impact to the season in the coming weeks”.

Northampton Saints chief executive Mark Darbon earlier this week admitted financial concerns are at the forefront of top clubs’ minds amid the coronavirus uncertainty.

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“It is one of the things that is right at the top of our minds,” said Darbon. “But there is a shared ambition to get our competition completed – so the number of games we might play or lose will have an impact.

“We make between 300,000 and 400,000 out of each game and have four home games left. It’s a huge concern and we are a loss-making club so a significant hit is a real challenge.

“But we are in a decent position, have a strong balance sheet and own our stadium – so we are confident that we can get through this.”

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