Gary Neville with Amanda Broderick to celebrate the partnership with the University of Salford (Image Credit: The University of Salfords Press Office photostream Flickr. Suitable for re-use under CC BY 2.0
Salford City FC co-owner, Gary Neville, believes the current financial state of English Football League (EFL) clubs due to the coronavirus pandemic will soon see a lot of players without a team.
The former Manchester United star stressed his concerns on the future of EFL players whose contracts are set to end come June 30.
Speaking to Sky Sports News’ Football Show earlier this week, Neville said: “There is a serious problem brewing in the next few months.
“Over 1,000 players in the Championship, League One and League Two are out of contract at the end of June and clubs haven’t got the money to recycle them back into the game.
“It’s going to be a shock for the whole of football but it will be the players at the lower end of the game who will suffer the most.”
The Ammies, who have been co-owned by Neville since 2014, currently sit tenth in SkyBet League Two in their first season.
But with the Covid-19 outbreak putting football on hold, it will be clubs at the far end of the pyramid, like Salford, who will financially struggle the most.
Salford could face losing ten players at the end of June, including key names such as Ibou Touray, Craig Conway and Chris Neal.
Touray, who has made the most league appearances for the Ammies this season, was recently named in the SkyBet League Two current top XI, and Salford’s only representative would be a big loss.
Conway has also been an influential figure for Salford in their first-ever League Two campaign, picking up the most assists so far for his side in the league.
Chris Neal has been a safe pair of hands between the sticks since he arrived at the Peninsula Stadium in 2018.
The 34-year-old became a club hero in his first season, after saving a penalty against Eastleigh that secured the Ammies’ place in the National League promotion final, which they went on to win.
To try and help keep the finances of clubs stable, The EFL and the Professional Footballers’ Association revealed a proposal earlier this week that could see League One and Two clubs able to defer up to 25 percent of player wages, with players earning below £2500 a month to be unaffected.
Responding to this, Neville said: “In the next few months there will have to be player cost reductions.
“It is an absolute given.
“What the EFL announced yesterday was the right approach.”
So, with the future of the rest of the season still up in the air, Salford City fans will be hoping that when football does resume at the Peninsula Stadium, the same familiar and reliable faces will be pulling on their shirts for the Ammies.
Below you can find a list of all Salford City players that are facing the end of their contracts, excluding loanees.