With the 2020 AFL season on halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the league is closing in with an agreement with its players in regards to the percentage of their pay cuts while in hiatus.
There have been sources with knowledge of the discussions claiming that a deal between the AFL and the league players is about to come to a close soon. Sources share that the deal will see the players bear a 50 per cent reduction in their pay for the months of April and May.
Moreover, it is said that the overall cut will be determined by chance that the competition comes back from its hiatus and the ‘tap was turned back on’’.
It is also suggested that the pay cuts have the possibility of going over 50 per cent if the league is not able to resume its games. Further doubts arise due to the view that the competition is not likely to come back right after its shutdown, giving the games a few more months before they take place — if the season does come back this year.
Reports say that the two sides are about to finalise the deal which can take up to the end of this week at the earliest.
Both parties seem to be willing to negotiate with each other, allowing the league to show the NAB and the ANZ their cost savings prior to the bank’s grant of giving them credit that can probably sum up to $600 million.
However, a complication stands in the way of the deal’s resolution. It is the situation wherein all of the contracts of the players will expire on October 31. Meanwhile, the AFL weighs in on the move to extend the 17-round home-and-away season and finals beyond its scheduled date, going as far as the possibility of completing the season in December.
AFLPA chief executive Paul Marsh and AFLPA president and Geelong champion Patrick Dangerfield lead the players in this negotiation. Players can also lose their direct funding for their union for an extended amount of time. At this point, there are still no clear indications on whether it will impact the player’s retirement funds.