Liverpool rip up the rule book on players contracts

Liverpool have taken drastic measures by changing their players contracts. What have they done?

Liverpool seem to be leading the way in terms of how professional football player contracts could be issued in coming seasons.

The current emphasis on breaking even with impending Premier League cost control measures has caused Liverpool to effectively plan ahead.

Lower pay and a higher number of performance related bonuses are being introduced which Liverpool have said is key to ensuring fairness for both players and clubs.

If other clubs follow suit then it could mean an end to the era of contracts at a rate over £100,000 per week in England.

“The attitude I’m trying to put forward when we’re negotiating with agents is that we want to do a contract which is fair for both sides. Fair often means the right amount of reward for a player who delivers,” said the club’s managing director Ian Ayre.

Liverpool are not the first club to try out such a change this season with Arsenal already complimenting the way they pay players based around their Champions League performances.

It seems a standard way for a club to reduce its wage bill if the Premier League implements financial rules which state a club cannot spend more than it makes.

This rule is already in place from UEFA and any club that does not break even at least, is prevented from playing in the Champions League or Europa League with Malaga being the contemporary example.

The major worry with this news is that, if it is adopted across the Premier League, England may not be a desirable choice for a lot of top stars around Europe.

Moves to Italy, Spain, Russia and other countries may be more appealing to players who believe they justify salaries of well over £100,000 per week. This could reduce the quality of football being played in England.

However, it is a necessary measure which is designed to stop more clubs from going out of business. Liverpool are not in danger of doing so but it is a model which can be used all over the football league.

This would also help to ensure fairness within a club; poor performances mean no bonuses. Players could earn the same amount of money as they currently are, but they would have to win games and silverware to do so.

This may create extra pressure when players are already under a massive amount but it seems to make sense.

What do you think about these contract changes?

image: © banoootah_qtr

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