Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy said “people need to wake up to the enormity” of the coronavirus pandemic as the club announced 550 non-playing staff will take a 20% pay cut.
Levy, who earned £7m last year – £4m in wages plus £3m for the completion of Tottenham’s stadium move – is among the non-playing directors and employees at the club who will take a cut in salary, initially for April and May.
The club will also use the government’s furlough scheme in an attempt to “protect jobs”.
Spurs are owned by billionaire Joe Lewis, through his investment firm Tavistock. According to The Sunday Times Rich List in 2019, the 83-year-old has a net worth of £4.358bn.
Levy added: “The crushing devastation on industries in many countries, the interdependence of international trade and travel in every aspect of our daily life is only now beginning to be felt.
“Every person on this planet will be affected and in my lifetime I cannot think of something so impactful. With over 786,000 infected, nearly 38,000 deaths and large segments of the world in lockdown we need to realise that football cannot operate in a bubble.
“We may be the eighth largest club in the world by revenue, according to the Deloitte survey, but all that historical data is totally irrelevant as this virus has no boundaries.”
Levy said Spurs would “continue to review” their position.
“We hope the current discussions between the Premier League, PFA and LMA will result in players and coaches doing their bit for the football eco system.
“I have no doubt we will get through this crisis but life will take some time to get back to normal.”
On Monday, Newcastle United became the first Premier League club to put non-playing staff on leave.
A number of other football clubs have taken steps to reduce their costs.
Hearts were the first Scottish Premiership side to ask staff to take a salary reduction of 50% and on Tuesday Celtic manager Neil Lennon said wage cuts were a possibility.
Elsewhere in Europe, Barcelona players are taking a 70% pay cut and will make additional contributions to ensure non-sporting staff receive full wages.
Juventus players and manager Maurizio Sarri agreed to freeze their pay for four months, while German sides Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, have also agreed to take pay cuts.