‘SPIRIT OF Everton FC’ stars agree 50 per cent pay cut over three months, saving club £10MILLION amid COVID-19 financial crisis

Boss Carlo Ancelotti and his Toffees squad immediately took a 30 per cent cut in March when the coronavirus lockdown kicked in.

'SPIRIT OF THE CLUB' Everton stars agree 50 per cent pay cut over three months… saving club £10MILLION amid coronavirus financial crisis

But senior figures, such as Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines, have been keen to do more to help the club survive, with first-team stars shaving off even more.

Everton’s chief executive, Denise Barrett-Baxendale and director of football Marcel Brands are just two other big names at Goodison Park to take 50 pay cut deferrals.

And Barrett-Baxendale explained the logic behind it, while praising all involved for the generous actions.

In a statement, the chief executive wrote: “Although we now have more precise details of the coronavirus crisis, we have known for some weeks that the impact would be significant and we have taken steps wherever possible to mitigate this impact.

“As a sign of the spirit and togetherness we have as a club, I can confirm that as soon as we closed our stadium in March, our players, coaching staff, board and our executive leadership team, along with other senior personnel, expressed their desire to protect the club.

“The board of directors, together with the manager and the nine members of his backroom staff.

“They volunteered to reductions and deferrals of up to 30 per cent. That willingness was there to protect the club, other staff, our fans and the wider community.

“The first team squad have now voluntarily agreed to deferrals of up to 50 per cent for the next three months.

“Everyone who has taken these reductions and deferrals have done so in the spirit of the club and I would like to express my thanks to them for demonstrating such integrity.”

Everton have been a great example to other clubs during the coronavirus pandemic.

As well as players, staff and board members accepting huge pay cuts, they’ve been proactive in helping the local community.

The Toffees set up the Blue Family appeal, with players taking time to ring potentially lonely fans to keep their spirits up.

The initiative has already raised £400,000 with chairman Bill Kenwright and major shareholder Farhad Moshiri pledging to double that figure, taking the total to a staggering £800,000.