Lioli slash players’ pay over poor results

MASERU — Lioli Football Club last week slashed players’ salaries by 10 percent after management said they were not happy with the players’ performances in recent games.

Lioli communications and marketing manager, Moeketsi Pitso, told the Lesotho Times they decided to hit the players where it hurts most — in the pocket — after a spate of poor results.

The players earn salaries that range between M500 and M3 000 a month.

This means that the highest paid player could have lost as much as M300 when the club deducted the  salaries.

Pitso said they had warned the players several times to up their game or risk forfeiting part of their salaries as punishment.

“We have a policy with the players that if they fail to produce results and are given several warnings, the team has a right to deduct part of their salaries,” Pitso said on Monday.

He added that the players were first warned after the side lost 1-0 to Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) on January 14.

Lioli drew 2-2 with Maduma in December and were also held to a lame nil-all draw against Joy in October.

“We first started warning them about their poor performance after losing to LDF but we still did not see results,” Pitso said.

He said the club had initially planned to deduct salaries by as much as 50 percent but this was later reduced to 10 percent following appeals by the players.

Lioli have gone through tough times this season winning only three of their last 11 premier league matches.

The Teyateyaneng giants have drawn four and lost four and are placed a lowly eighth on the Vodacom Premier League log with just 13 points.

The decision to slash the players’ salaries, however, caused a mini furore within the club as players went on a go-slow to protest the action.

Pitso said the players boycotted training last Tuesday and Wednesday in protest.

A meeting called to discuss the problems saw the club reduce the punishment from 50 percent to 10 percent, Pitso said.

The players went back to training last Thursday before posting a 1-0 victory over Bantu last Saturday.

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