“We had about $7 million of operational cash available to us, which is outside of the future fund, which will enable us to get through this really tough time,” Anderson told The Age.
“But even with that strong financial position, if we’re not playing matches and playing games in front of crowds at some time, even a strong financial club like us would take a massive hit.
“Our members and sponsors are pivotal to us in ensuring that were are able to stay strong, viable and independent.”
Anderson said the members to date had been sticking with the club, with one 81-year-old member from Sydney donating $10,000 in a random call to the membership department.
“He loved what the club and team’s been doing and just wanted to make the donation,” he said.
“The club members are sticking with their club and we’re not seeing any trends of seeking refunds.”
Anderson said not one sponsor had asked for a discount from the club. “Not one of our partners have approached us with a view of any level of discount discussions.”
The Collingwood chief executive said out-of-contract stars Jordan De Goey and Darcy Moore had been understanding of the situation that contracts talks were on hold – as with all contracts in the AFL – as the league works out the size of the salary cap and playing lists.
“Both of those individuals are really aware of the circumstances and understanding and so we’re all just getting through at the moment. We’ll pick up the conversations when we’re able to.
“All those answers will need to be there before any club enters contract re-negotiations and or new contracts.”
Anderson said the staff member who recently returned from overseas infected with COVID-19 was fine and the club had “put in really stringent protocols” around its six teams to protect them and staff.
He said Collingwood recognised that there would be a reduced soft cap on football department spending, but clearly had a preference for a soft cap, rather than a hard one, like that on player payments, that the AFL is said to be considering.
“Our preference is certainly a soft cap but we understand with that soft cap it’s going to be a lesser amount.” The AFL plans to cut the soft cap by about $3 million, to $6.7 million next year.
Anderson said the Magpies had chosen not to be involved with the Amazon documentary – which is being produced for the tech giant by club president Eddie McGuire’s company – because, while they were “supportive of the concept” and open to it in future, they wanted to “focus on the job at hand” without distractions.
Jake Niall is a Walkley award-winning sports journalist and chief AFL writer for The Age.