KHALED El-Ahmad admits Barnsley will have to offset the cost of relegation to League One, if they go down, by sales of some of their star players.

Relegation from the Championship to League One is thought to cost clubs about £7-8million, mainly due to the loss of shared television revenue.

That may have to be offset by the sales of star players such as Michal Helik, Mads Andersen, Brad Collins, Callum Styles, Callum Brittain, Cauley Woodrow and Carlton Morris.

Helik, 26, and Woodrow, 27, both have one year left on their contracts.

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Chief executive El-Ahmad told the Chronicle: “When you enter every summer, there is a risk of selling players.

“Some players have one year left on their contact, there might be other some players another club thinks are great and we get an offer we cannot refuse.

“If we lose money (through relegation) there is a way to bridge that gap by selling players.

“But we have players under contract so we can dictate and control what happens.”

El-Ahmad admitted players will probably have to be sold before any can be brought in.

He added: “The more realistic way to look at it is that we have to do the necessary adjustments first before signing players.

“But it goes hand in hand – some are expiring, some have one year left – it tends to balance itself out.

“We already know who we want in the summer.

“We tried to get some of them in the winter.

“But it will come down to if we can afford them and if the players want to come.

“There are things we might not be able to control.

“We have a list of targets that we want who we are as confident as we can be will help the club.”

Victor Adeboyejo, Romal Palmer and Matty Wolfe are all out of contract in the summer, while the Reds have an option to extend Aapo Halme’s deal for a further year.

Adeboyejo has started just six league games this season, while Palmer has drifted out of the starting line-up and Halme, currently injured, has not played a league game in more than six months.

Wolfe, who came through the Oakwell academy, has impressed recently in central midfield.

He is one the Reds are thought to be close to tying down on a long-term deal.

El-Ahmad said: “We are negotiations with some and some we’re not.

“All players that we think are good, we’re in discussions with.”

Loan players Remy Vita, Claudio Gomes, Amine Bassi and Domingos Quina have all been regulars in the second half of the season but only Bayern Munich left-back Vita’s deal is known to have a buy clause in it.

El-Ahmad said: “Vita has a buy clause and some others do, and some don’t.

“I would like to keep some of them whatever league we are in but it’s a question of what the players want.”

El-Ahmad was asked about the overall financial health of the club after the Covid-19 crisis and now the potential relegation.

“The goal is to continue to be sustainable. I would like this club to outlive all of us for many more years to come.

“Whatever financial situation we face in the summer, we will have to figure out so people can continue to come and watch us.”