THE Professional Footballer’s Association say they could offer financial support to lessen the impact of the coronavirus crisis.

As Birmingham City yesterday became the first Championship side to ask players and staff to take wage deferrals of up to 50 per cent, other clubs across the EFL are expected to follow suit as reduced cashflow caused by the postponement of games kicks in.

Wanderers have thus far declined to comment on whether their staff and players will be asked to take reduced salaries or furloughs in the coming weeks.

But while clubs come to terms with the financial challenge, the PFA say they could play a role in helping clubs avoid worst case scenarios.

Talks were held between the PFA, Premier League and EFL on Monday to discuss player welfare – including when it could be safe for staff to return to training grounds and the issue of playing behind closed doors.

PFA chief executive – and former Wanderers player – Gordon Taylor says an “emergency fund” will be created to aid the 5,000 current and 50,000 former union members.

“We have to find a common policy throughout the leagues when it comes to things like wages, training schedules and the safety of our members,” he told the Daily Mirror.

“We are talking and talks will carry on with nothing off the table as we have to do what we can for the good of the game.

“But we are not just talking about players here and we have to keep that in mind because we have to try and help the clubs keep going and be realistic if we are going to do that.

“Everyone thinks of the Premier League clubs will be OK but these are incredibly testing times throughout football, throughout all of the leagues and for all of our members and their families.

“We will look at everything and see what happens when things filter down. The £50m emergency fund for the EFL clubs, the Government relief in terms of wages, VAT and National Insurance and if that is not enough then we will have to look at setting up a Task Force and an emergency fund.

“We have to keep an open mind, nothing is off the table and we have got to adopt a common policy, especially when the rest of society is adopting a social distancing policy.

“It’s something we’ve never been through before, it’s unique. I was playing in the big freeze in 1963 when football was not played for months. But no-one knows how and when this will end so we have to look after our members at this time.”

PFA officials visited clubs before the lockdown to advise their members and are now discussing with other organisations such as FIFPro and FIFA on how to tackle potential contractual issues this summer.

Wanderers have 15 professional players who will fall out on contract at the end of June – but some forecast that the 2019/2020 season could be pushed well into the summer to enable it to reach a conclusion.