The clubs are now in a state of financial crisis due to AFL suspension. A high-ranking club official also confirmed that there are more than 500 jobs put on hold for the next two or three days. It was also reported that the chief executives need to prepare at least $5 million worth of savings while the players will receive up to 79% pay cut.
Due to this pandemic, everyone will have to take a pay cut one way or another. No one is exempted, even the assistant coaches, list managers, and football analysts will be affected.
According to chief Gillon McLachlan, the league will be in an indefinite hiatus due to coronavirus crisis. He also said that this was the biggest financial crisis in AFL’s history.
‘To say this is the most serious crisis to hit our league in 100 years is an understatement. As a community and as a code, we all need to take the unprecedented and required actions to get through this together’, McLachlan said.
On the other hand, Chad Wingard also said that he will not return home during the AFL shut down period because he does not want to put his family in danger.
Wingard played against Brisbane Lions at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) when the AFL finalized their decision to suspend this year’s season until the end of May.
No matter how much everyone is excited about this year’s season, the governing body of the AFL still takes the players’ health seriously.
Another sad news is that the AFL Women’s season will also be shut down without any premiership given while the AFL club training is suspended as well.
‘To say this is the most serious threat to our game in 100 years is an understatement. It is unprecedented in its impact. It is unprecedented in the impact it is having on our game and the wider community, and as a community and as a code, we all need to take the unprecedented and required actions to get through this together’, McLachlan added.
It might be disheartening to hear this news, but this current pandemic puts everyone’s life at risk. To lessen the number of people contracting the virus, Prime Minister Scott Morrison advised all of the Australian airlines to cancel all non-essential domestic travel.
South Australian Premier Steven Marshall also announced that his state will close its borders to impose a 14-day self-isolation period.
However, a lot of spectators are looking forward to Sunday’s match between the West Coast Eagles and Melbourne. It will be the last match before AFL suspension takes effect.
It might be difficult for everyone especially to those who are affected directly, but it is an action that needs to be taken for the sake of everyone. In this period of long hiatus, the clubs are doing their best to reach out to their supporters.
Here is a message released by the Geelong Cats:
There are many questions being asked about how our club and the AFL will cope during this period. We will work through these calmly. We are committed to ensuring the long term health and wellbeing of our club and our people.
With the situation changing so rapidly, these decisions are difficult and complex. We appreciate your support and pride in the club as we work through the many issues we face.
We will keep you up to date as more information becomes available.
It is really important that we all follow the instructions of the health experts and look after each other. We are all in this together and will get through it if we bring out our best qualities. We will be united in doing our part to overcome the spread of this disease.
As we said last week, our club has been playing football for 162 seasons and we’ve come through World Wars, depressions and even global pandemics. We will come through this too even though the ride will be bumpy.
– President Colin Carter & chief executive Brian Cook