March 26 (Reuters) - Clubs playing in the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana have been offered an advance of up to 60% of their prize money so they can stay solvent during the coronavirus crisis, the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) said on Thursday.
A total of 76 clubs are still active in the two competitions, which are South America’s equivalent of the Champions League and Europa League.
All receive money for qualifying and the sum increases the further they progress.
Some have already furloughed employees and many players are training at home while in self-isolation.
“Situations like this demand quick and exceptional responses,” CONMEBOL president Alejandro Dominguez said in a statement.
“With this advance, CONMEBOL will allow the clubs guarantees to meet their financial obligations with collaborators, backroom staff, players and contractors.”
South American football has ground to a halt over the last few weeks as the coronavirus pandemic hits the continent.
The finals of the two main competitions are due to be held in November.
Reporting by Andrew Downie Editing by Toby Davis