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FC Barcelona to cut staff, player pay amid coronavirus pandemic

With no soccer being played due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FC Barcelona is cutting wages for all of its staff, including players, the club announced on Thursday.

It did not, however, specify how big of a pay reduction will be implemented.

"Basically it is a reduction of the working day, imposed by the circumstances and the protection measures carried out, and, as a consequence, the proportional reduction of the remuneration provided for in the respective contracts," the club said in a statement.

Both La Liga and the Champions League, like virtually every other sports league across the world, were suspended in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

[ Coronavirus: How the sports world is responding to the pandemic ]

Spain has been hit extremely hard by the virus. The country had more than 56,000 confirmed cases as of Thursday afternoon, according to The New York Times, the second-highest in Europe behind Italy and the fourth-highest worldwide. The United States has the most cases among any country with more than 81,500. As a result, much of Spain has been locked down.

FC Barcelona stands to lose millions of dollars with no soccer being played, as do clubs across the world. 

Barcelona players, however, didn’t take the suggestion of having their pay cut well. The players rejected a proposal on Wednesday that could have seen 70 percent of their wages cut, according to ESPN. Players reportedly were willing to accept a salary reduction, however were upset with the initial proposal. 

The pay reduction will impact all of FC Barcelona’s clubs, including the women’s team, basketball team and more. The club also announced it has made its facilities available for use to the Catalunya health department amid the crisis.

Multiple other teams and leagues across the world have either considered or implemented pay cuts amid the worldwide sports hiatus. The NBA reduced salaries of top executives by 20 percent on Thursday, and PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan announced last week that he’ll be foregoing his salary entirely until play resumes. 

The Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils announced that they were going to cut pay for its staff earlier this week, but quickly reversed course after immense public backlash. TD Garden, the home of the Boston Bruins and Celtics, laid off hundreds of employees this week, too.

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