Morecambe boss sounds a warning to out-of-contract players
Morecambe manager Derek Adams believes that out-of-contract players could be in for a rude awakening as they seek employment for next season.
The coronavirus pandemic brought an early end to the seasons in Leagues One and Two, causing a huge gap in clubs’ finances from the lack of matchday income, both through the gate and commercially.
There is also the small matter of no definite date for the start of the 2020/21 season, though it’s believed September 12 may be the day in question.
As a result the 1,000-plus players released by their former clubs may have to lower their financial demands to find work next time around.
It means that, almost 25 years after the Bosman ruling which gave players the upper hand in contract negotiations, it is the clubs who now look to have the advantage again.
There has been talk of possible salary caps or reduced squad sizes as football plots a path through the coronavirus crisis.
With Morecambe having announced that only six out-of-contract players will be offered new terms, Adams has warned players that the days of large salaries and longer contracts could be on their way out.
He said: “I think players’ wages are going to have to come down, there’s no two ways about that.
“The money we will have in football is going to change for the time being.
“It will be no different at Morecambe. The wage cap doesn’t really affect us at Morecambe because we have always been underneath that anyway.
“The big issue for us is supporters getting into the game and the commercial department because the lack of income in that way is going to affect us.
“If it affects the clubs, then it affects the players because we can’t afford to pay them the same wages.”
A number of clubs had published their retained lists before Morecambe did likewise last week.
However, as Adams explained, the uncertainty over how the season would end had left the club in limbo.
He said: “We’d all like to have made plans for the following season.
“Until we got clarification on what happened with this season, we couldn’t put out the retained list.
“We couldn’t do that until we get an idea of budgets, how long we are going to be without supporters in the stadium.
“The club has to work out cash flows but, like all teams in the world, we just have to deal with the situation.”