In Brief

Today’s back pages: Premier League club is ‘losing £9m a week’

A round-up of the sport headlines from UK newspapers on 20 April

Clubs haemorrhage money 

Daily Mirror, Daily Express and the Daily Star all report that the lockdown is costing at least one Premier League club £9m a week with all of the top-flight suffering from the coronavirus lockdown to some degree. 

The club isn’t named but according to the Mirror it might have to take out a “£100m bank loan to cover their potential losses”. 

With no end in sight to the lockdown, and with time running out to complete the season, the looming fear for the Premier League is that it will have to return the £762m in TV cash to broadcasters.

Meanwhile the Daily Mail says that Watford will become the third Premier League club - after West Ham and Southampton - to announce a wage deferral scheme for its players. 

The paper says that the Hornets have agreed a 30% deferral plan and adds that Arsenal and Chelsea are poised to announce that their squads have agreed to a wage reduction.

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End game for League Two

According to The Sun League Two clubs will meet tomorrow to discuss “ending the season now”. 

The 24 teams have organised an emergency video call and the paper says that the outcome could have “huge repercussions all the way up to the Premier League”. 

The League Two clubs doubt that they have the funds to restart the season should the coronavirus lockdown be lifted in the coming weeks, particularly as it’s certain any remaining games would be played behind closed doors. 

With next to no TV revenue coming their way, the clubs believe the best option is to end the season now as that would also mean that players whose contracts end on 30 June would not have to have their deals extended in order to see out the season.

Ryder causes storm

September’s Ryder Cup could be played without spectators, reports The Times, which says that Seth Waugh, chief executive of the PGA of America, is in talks with the European Tour about the possibility of going ahead with one of the most prestigious events in the sport even if the coronavirus crisis precludes admitting fans to Whistling Straits in Wisconsin from 25-27 September. 

“We have begun to talk about whether you could create some virtual fan experience and we are going to try to be as creative as we can,” said Waugh in an interview with WFAN Sports Radio. “It’s [still] to be determined, frankly, whether you could hold it without fans or not.”

The Times says such a move would be met with “opposition from the players” and the paper quotes Padraig Harrington, the Europe captain, who earlier in the month said: “The common consensus now is the Ryder Cup will not be played unless the fans are there.”

Today’s sport headlines

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