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LFP confirms imminent receipt of €224.5m loan from the French government to support clubs following league cancellation

The LFP have confirmed in a press release this afternoon that they will be receiving a government loan to support clubs after the French football body decided to prematurely terminate the 2019/20 campaign.

The General Assembly of the LFP voted this agenda item through via a video conference this afternoon, the size of the loan will be €224.5m, according to L’Équipe, and has been sought to make up for the shortfall linked to the termination of payments from Canal + and BeIN Sports, who were the 2019/20 Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 broadcasters.

This loan is in addition to the €47.6m already paid by the two TV stations, an amount that corresponds to the matches played before the league was first suspended on 13th March. The LFP thus will hold around €272.1m, which is approximately what the clubs would have received by the end of the season had the broadcasters not terminated their broadcasting contracts and if the campaign had played out in full.

The sum, collected owing to this government scheme that has been put into place to help companies get through this COVID-19 crisis as easily as possible, now has to be distributed just as the TV rights were due to be across the Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 clubs.

The scheme allows companies to request a loan from the bank of up to 25% of last year’s turnover, which for the LFP was €898m. The state guarantees 90% of the loan themselves. The terms of the loan ensure that the LFP do not have to pay anything back within the first year. After that, they can reimburse it immediately after this period or over a five years.

Several clubs have already taken advantage of the scheme on an individual level, with Strasbourg and Paris FC having successfully been inducted into the programme and another 30 or so clubs have filed an application for the scheme.

It should be noted that it is the LFP who are receiving the sum through the scheme and they will therefore be responsible for paying the amount back.

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