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GEELONG coach Chris Scott has pledged to work without pay as he prepares for the AFL shutdown without his closest lieutenants.

Scott has informed the Cats' executive that he will relinquish his salary while the club's assistant coaches and development coaches are stood down.

Football departments across the country shut their doors on Tuesday for at least the next six weeks with games on hold until at least the end of May.

The AFL will reassess its return date through April, with players allowed to return to clubs one month before a resumption is set.

The best case scenario is a return to playing by June 1 but it could yet be longer as the AFL continues to be guided by the government on limiting the outbreak of the coronavirus.

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Scott insisted he couldn't continue to work while his team was standing down without pay. They include close friend and former Brisbane teammate Nigel Lappin, Matthew Knights, James Rahilly, plus Matthew Scarlett and Corey Enright – two players Scott coached to a flag in 2011. 

Geelong's set-up for the next two months will mirror the rest of the competition, with football departments to run on skeleton staff after many employees were stood down on Monday

Roles will mostly include the senior coach, head of football, head of conditioning and welfare who will keep in contact with players while they're away from the club.

Geelong's head of football Simon Lloyd sits on the Cats' executive, a team that will drop to part-time in coming weeks.

Players remain in negotiations with the AFL over pay cuts for April and May after the League's initial request of a 79 per cent reduction

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Scott described Monday as one of the hardest days he had endured in a football career that spans back to his playing days at Brisbane 26 years ago.

"I think we're all a little bit scared at the moment and we can't sugar coat that part of it," Scott told Fox Footy.

"There's a lot that's going to happen over the next couple of weeks and I suspect it's going to get worse before it gets better and it's going to be a monumental challenge for all of us.

"I hope the players left the footy club sensing the determination of the people in the industry to support them as best as possible.

"One of the hard parts about that is we couldn't lay it all out for them because we just don't know exactly where this is going to end up."

The remainder of the AFL senior coaches last week offered to take 20 per cent pay cuts. Others are expected to take more at their respective clubs.