ESSENDON chief executive Xavier Campbell has apologised to his players for the club's handling of plans to initially withhold their wages.

The Bombers have backflipped on the scheme that would have left players going without nine per cent of their usual pay for November.

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Players were notified by email last Friday night of the plan, which came about because of the AFL's cuts to the salary cap following financial implications of COVID-19.

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The AFL last month confirmed the total player payments for each club in 2021 would be $12.1 million - down nine per cent from this year. 

But Campbell has confirmed all Essendon players have been paid in full for November. 

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"I have apologised to the players for how this matter was handled," Campbell said. 

We should have done it better, we needed to do it better, and we will do it better moving forward

- Xavier Campbell

"We should have done it better, we needed to do it better, and we will do it better moving forward.

"I have had productive discussions with members of the leadership group and playing group, including captain Dyson Heppell, and the players are aware the club was not acting with any ill-intent. 

"I'd like to thank the players for their understanding. We look forward to working through this with them over the coming weeks to finalise the process."