In addition to this important initiative with the Red Cross, we have also made our facilities and resources available to the President of the Community and the Mayor of Madrid to help them in any way possible. Our stadium has a huge central kitchen equipped to prepare all the food that is served on a game day, so this facility can be useful for preparing menus that the Community needs to cover the basic needs of many citizens.The club opted to focus its help on the toilets, but a few days ago we could see that it thanked all of society for its involvement in these delicate moments.When focusing our help, we let ourselves be guided by those who know the most about these situations. The Red Cross and the authorities were clear from the beginning that the priority was to protect those who directly fight against COVID-19, the health workers. But we also believe that this is a time when we should thank many more people. Many, many people who continue to work every day at the foot of the canyon and the millions of Spaniards who are still at home to prevent this pandemic from spreading. “You have to minimize the risks when training and games arrive” Enrique Cerezo, president of Atlético de Madrid, has given an interview to the rojiblanca website in which he reviews the current situation of the club in this crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic. The competition is paralyzed and the athletes cannot go to see their team, but the club is still in contact with them.Despite the fact that our offices remain closed, from the first moment we have wanted to maintain direct communication with our partners and fans. Our channels with them are still active and we try to answer your questions by phone or email. In addition, a few weeks ago, we launched a plan to contact the partners who are most affected by this situation, over 75 years of age and disabled, who are the ones who are suffering the most at the moment and to whom a call from their Atleti comforts them. We will continue to contact more partners every day to try to encourage them with a red and white talk and be close to them.There is still no date for the return to activity, how are the players doing?We are in direct contact with them and with the technical staff to be interested first in them and in the state of their relatives’ health and also to chat for a while. They are handling this situation phenomenally well, with great integrity. When I talk to them I see them very strong mentally, and as professionals that they are, working hard and wishing that the competition returns as soon as possible. They try to spend time in the best possible way with their families.That uncertainty about returning to competitions greatly complicates the planning for the remainder of the season. How does the club work in this regard?The reality is that no one knows when or under what conditions sports activity will return, which is what concerns us, or other activities that are currently paralyzed. LaLiga is working in different scenarios to minimize risks when training returns, and later matches, for players, employees, the media, etc. We are also working with different possible calendars, but now we have to be patient and wait for what the authorities tell us.In some European championships such as the German one the teams have returned to training and here in Spain some clubs have already requested to do so.We are working hand in hand with the different organizations and attending to what they mark at each moment. The health, social and economic crisis we are experiencing forces us all to be on the same page and to shoulder our shoulders to work together. This pandemic and its consequences affect us all and football will only emerge from this crisis if we work as a team.The club has requested a Temporary Employment Regulation File.The club has seen the need to request an ERTE in order to safeguard the entity’s economic viability. We must bear in mind that, as has happened to all clubs and to many companies in other sectors, we have been forced to cease our activity. Given this situation, we were obliged to study solutions for the survival of the entity and we had to make this decision that affects 430 employees.The ERTE has also affected the players …From the first moment I knew that there would be no problem with the first team, because it is a fantastic group and they understand the situation perfectly. In addition, both the first staff and all the club’s directors, with the CEO at the head, agreed to contribute the amount necessary to supplement the salary of the employees affected by the ERTE. We try to help each other like a big family. I am very proud of all of them and grateful for their help.How do you see the nearest future?As I have already mentioned before, we have to wait to see how this crisis evolves and at what point we can recover normal activity. You have to be patient and try to carry it as well as possible. And I believe that, despite the critical moment we live in, we must never lose hope and trust that we will recover in all areas of society. At Atleti we will work as hard as we can to get it as soon as possible. As we athletics say: Never stop believing. “Our priority is to give a heartfelt tribute to all the deceased athletes” The club is working to pay them a well-deserved tribute. What can you tell us about it?That will be one of our top priorities when we get back to normal. No one knows when or how we will return to our daily activities, but what is certain is that all the athletes will pay a heartfelt tribute in our home, in the Wanda Metropolitano, to all the recently deceased members and athletic supporters. And of course, to all the great legends that unfortunately have left us in recent weeks.In order to fight this pandemic, the collaboration of the entire society is vital. How has the club reacted in this regard?Thanks to the work that we have been doing for many years with our Foundation in solidarity actions, we have been able to collaborate immediately with the Community of Madrid, with the City Council and with the organizations that fight against Covid-19 and that help the population. We have a wonderful relationship and develop a close collaboration with the Red Cross and SavetheChildren, so from the first moment we put ourselves at your disposal to help in any way we could.From the club we have turned to an initiative launched by our coach and his family together with the Atlético de Madrid Foundation to raise funds for the Red Cross and allocate them to the protection of our toilets. How are you living through these difficult times?Never before had I experienced such a delicate and tragic situation and at the same time with so much uncertainty. Watching thousands of people die in such a short space of time is a terrible thing.Also these days the Atético have lost many people close to the club. ..We have lost relatives and relatives in recent weeks due to the coronavirus. Red and white legends such as Miguel Jones, Joaquín Peiró, José Luis Capón, Radomir Antic…, club members who have been supporting Atleti for many years, athletic friends, people from the world of soccer with whom we have shared rivalry …, too many people whom we will greatly miss.
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- “ERTE was necessary for the economic viability of Atleti”