Barcelona: Lionel Messi announces players will take 70% pay cut

Lionel Messi
Barcelona are one of a number of European clubs taking pay cuts during the pandemic

Barcelona players will take a 70% pay cut during the coronavirus pandemic and make additional contributions to ensure non-sporting staff receive full wages.

Captain Lionel Messi said the move was delayed as the players were "looking for a formula to help the club".

Juventus players and manager Maurizio Sarri agreed to freeze their pay for four months at the weekend.

Spain's national death toll now stands at 7,340, making it the worst-affected country in the world behind Italy.

German sides Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, have also agreed to take pay cuts.

In a statement, Barca skipper Messi said: "Before going any further, we want to make it clear that we were always willing to reduce our salaries because we understand perfectly that we are in an exceptional situation. We, as players, are always here to help the the club when they ask.

"It does not cease to surprise us that from within the club there were those who tried to put us under the magnifying glass and tried to add pressure to do something that we always knew we would do.

"If we didn't speak until now, it's because the priority was to to find solutions to help the club and to see who the most affected were during this situation.

"For our party, the moment has arrived that, the cut will be 70% of our wage during the state of alarm. We will also help out the club in order for the workers to be paid 100% of their wages."

Barcelona's board of directors, members of its professional sports teams and most of the basketball team have also agreed to reduce their salaries.

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