The Spanish footballing giants Atletico Madrid have come to a decision of cutting down the wages of the staff, including the players, to relax the financial burden on the La Liga club as they are struggling with the economic impact of the coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic, as stated by the club on Friday.

The Madrid-based club joined the likes of Barcelona who also imposed a wage cut which is compulsory for their players during the lockdown period as Spain became the second-most affected country in Europe behind Italy.

Atletico to cut wages of staff

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Spain has nearly 57,800 confirmed cases with 4,365 deaths due to the pandemic and the country has been in lockdown since March 14 with the period extended by a further 15 days to April 12. Atletico CEO Miguel Angel Gil said wage cut was necessary to guarantee the "survival of the club" with the staff being paid despite the season being suspended indefinitely, which has impacted revenues of clubs across Europe.

Gil said the club made a "difficult decision" to request for a Temporary Employment Regulation File (ERTE) which allows them to cut wages when circumstances are beyond their control. "We are working to minimize the impact of the measure and limit it to what is strictly essential, so that when the competition resumes, everything will work as it has been until now," he said in a statement here

"Our sponsors and collaborating companies are suffering like us and the rest of society from the terrible impact of this health and economic crisis. I want to thank you for your commitment in these hard times and for your help." Atletico are sixth in La Liga, a point off fourth place and Champions League qualification with 11 games to go. However, they qualified for the Champions League quarter-finals after eliminating defending champions Liverpool earlier this month.

(With agency inputs)