'People have young families and bills to pay' - Ex-Gateshead staff and players still awaiting pay for April

Former players and staff at Gateshead are still awaiting their pay for the month of April – seven days after it was due to reach their accounts.

Wednesday, 8th May 2019, 5:01 pm
Former Gateshead staff and players have hit out.

This will be the second consecutive month that the League club have failed to pay their staff on time.

Last month, funds released from a £200,000 bond paid to the National League were used to meet the cost of wages and it remains to be seen whether the same scenario will be played out this month.

The news comes as the latest blow to the former employees of the club after they were dismissed as part of a cost-cutting exercise conducted by chairman and owner Dr Ranjan Varghese.

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The likes of manager Ben Clark, assistant manager Ian Watson and press officer Dominic Scurr were all sacked via email, and general manager Alisha Henry received notice of her dismissal via a text message within hours of the club’s final game of the season.

Henry told the Sunderland Echo “We still can’t believe that this hasn’t been sorted.

“We are sitting here jobless, a week after we were let go by the club, and now we have no money because our wages have not been paid on time again.

“There has been no communication from the club and it’s starting to affect our personal lives.

“People have young families and bills to pay, it’s a real worry for everyone and it needs to be sorted as soon as possible.”

Former Heed captain Scott Barrow remain the only player still contracted to Gateshead and he admitted that the situation is proving a difficult distraction after a season of off-field issues at the club.

“We have all got commitments that we need to meet, and we need that pay to meet them,” explained the Welsh wing-back.

“It’s not nice being paid, and that’s not just about myself, that’s the rest of the lads and others at the club as well.

“We want to enjoy our summer and our time off after a tough season, but this has all made it difficult to do so.”

The Echo has approached Gateshead Football Club, the Football Association and the National League for comment on the situation.

Meanwhile, a GoFundMe page set up by Gateshead supporters with the aim of backing a newly-created club in the town has surpassed the £8,500 mark within its first seven days.

The Gateshead Soul supporters group announced plans to form a new club at a meeting last Wednesday night and their online fund has received online support from the likes of Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer and former England star Chris Waddle over the last week.