'No warning has been made' - Hearts reject suspension to players claim in statement

A controversial clause in players’ contracts allows clubs to suspend wages

Hearts released a statement late on Friday night to deny a report in the media that the club had made a warning to players regarding a clause which enables the suspension of salaries.

Clubs have been made aware of Clause 12 in their contractual agreements which essentially allows teams to suspend paying players during this time.

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Earlier this month Hearts made a request to staff, asking for them to take a 50 percent wage cut to help the club navigate their way through the current coronavirus shutdown.

Hearts released a statement late on Friday night. Picture: SNSHearts released a statement late on Friday night. Picture: SNS
Hearts released a statement late on Friday night. Picture: SNS

It was reported on Friday that owner Ann Budge had sent an email to players making them aware of this article in their contracts and suggesting it is going to be used.

It was refuted by the club in a statement which included part of the email sent to players, noting that they were not “at this time” invoking Clause 12.

It read: “The club feels it is necessary to clarify, once again, that contrary to a report in the media, no ‘warning’ has been made to our players in regard to agreeing to wage cuts or Clause 12 being invoked.

“A letter was sent to the squad, on the advice of the SPFL and its legal advisors, in order to protect the club’s rights. The covering email that accompanied the letter very clearly stated that:

“We have not, at this time, decided to exercise this right and are working diligently to find an alternative solution to the unprecedented financial problems facing the Club as a consequence of the suspension of the game. As previously intimated we plan to pay full salaries as normal until the end of March, 2020. However, in doing so, we need to make it very clear that we do not waive our right to suspend Player agreements in the future, should we require to do so to safeguard the future of the Club.

“Hearts continue to have regular open dialogue with players and are all working together to get through this incredibly difficult time.”

On Thursday, Budge sought to clarify reports that the club had sent an email to agents saying they would possibly have transfer funds when it came to signing new players.

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