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Fifa threaten to relegate AFC Leopards over former coach’s dues

Fifa has warned it could relegate AFC Leopards from Kenya’s top-flight football league as a sanction for failing to settle former coach Marko Vasilijevic his outstanding dues.

In documents seen by Nairobi News, football’s world governing body has also slapped the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League side with a CHF 1000 (about Sh120,000) fine for consistently defaulting on this payment.

Leopards owe the Serbian coach Sh360,000 in salary arrears and match-winning bonuses, which the club has failed to pay for the last two years.

“AFC Leopards is granted a final deadline of 30 days as from the notification of the final decision (26/05/2021) in which to settle the said amount,” Fifa’s communique states in part.

“Upon the expiry of the aforementioned final deadline and in the event of persistent failure or default to comply in full with the decision within the period stipulated, a transfer ban will be pronounced until the amount due is paid.”

“In addition, deduction of points or relegation to a lower division may also be ordered in relation to a transfer ban.”

Marko left Leopards via mutual consent in 2019 after a string of poor results after only three months as head coach.

Incidentally, he is not the only former employee who is owed by the club.

Leopards also owe former coaches Andre Cassa Mbungo and Ivan Minnaert Sh7 million in total in salary arrears.

The club has also been ordered by Fifa to pay former player Vincent Habamahoro Sh1.8 million.

Leopards have since asked for a reprieve from Fifa, claiming the club has been hard hit on the financial front by the Covid-19 pandemic.