EFL issues desperate plea to the government for immediate assistance with many clubs now at breaking point as written submission calls for deferment on tax payments and lowering of VAT
- A opening up of the Job Support Scheme for support staff is also called for
- Championship clubs are grappling with the looming pay day later in October
- Sportsmail revealed last month that Championship clubs faced bankruptcy
- EFL clubs continue to fear the worst amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic
The EFL has urged the government to commit to a raft of measures as part of a desperate plea for immediate assistance – with many of its clubs at breaking point.
Deferment on tens of millions of pounds of tax payments, a lowering of VAT to 5 per cent and a potential opening up of the Job Support Scheme for support staff to avoid hundreds of redundancies all feature in a written submission, which paints a stark picture of a future without fans in stadiums.
Sources at a number of Championship clubs have disclosed that they are currently grappling with the looming pay day at the end of the month with some concerned they will be unable to give staff their wages in full, unless help is forthcoming.
EFL chairman Rick Parry and the league have issued a plea for help to the government
A number of Championship clubs are grappling with the looming pay day at the end of October
When the pandemic first struck, payments to the taxman were placed on hold for a three-month period, with around £100m thought to be involved. Last month, Sportsmail revealed that a number of Championship clubs faced bankruptcy amid fears Whitehall would demand immediate payment of deferred bills believed to be between £4m and £5m to HMRC.
A number of individual payment plans were subsequently agreed, but – as this newspaper also reported last week – some second tier clubs threatened to refuse to pay following a lack of financial assistance from the government.
League rules surrounding non-payment of taxes were relaxed when the pandemic first struck. That meant that the threat of an embargo for non-payment, along with other penalties, was temporarily lifted. While the deadline for that measure has passed, it has been agreed that any punishments will again be held back.
Last month, Sportsmail revealed that a number of Championship clubs faced bankruptcy
Along with PAYE deferment, the EFL has noted that VAT has been reduced from the standard 20 per cent to 5 per cent for the leisure and tourism industry and has asked for a similar reduction to apply to football clubs.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak brought in the JSS to replace furlough in November. Under its original terms, clubs feared the JSS would be of little use to them as they believed support staff would not be eligible.
On Thursday, after the submission was sent, Sunak announced big changes to the scheme which more than doubled the maximum payment to £1,541.75 a month, but those concerns remain among clubs who face making hundreds of redundancies.
A request for the scheme to be accessible featured in the submission, amid hopes that a change will be forthcoming.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has brought in the JSS to replace furlough from November onwards