CAPS United should put in place proper structures in order to avoid violent confrontations like what transpired at Makepekepe this past week or risk getting extinct, the Daily News on Sunday can report.
Last Tuesday, Green Machine players besieged the business premises of club co-director Nhamo Tutisani where they confronted him over outstanding salaries.
When Tutisani arrived and tried to drive into work, the players blocked his vehicle before a heated war of words broke out.
What was said between the two parties clearly showed animosity between the club management and the squad.
At the height of the verbal exchanges, the club had to call in riot police as tempers flared as the players vowed to sleep at the complex until their dues had been deposited in their accounts.
The situation at the club deteriorated to such levels due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic which has delayed the start of the 2020 Castle Lager Premiership season.
With CAPS and most clubs relying heavily on gate takings for survival, meeting their day-to-day running costs is now proving to be a challenge.
In other countries, top clubs like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham have all agreed pay cuts with their players.
Footballers’ Union of Zimbabwe (Fuz) president Desmond Maringwa urged the Green Machine to have proper structures which allow players and management to have open discussions regarding welfare issues.
“What happened at CAPS United is really an unfortunate incident and as Fuz we urge clubs to be more professional in handling contractual obligations.
“Club structures should be a guiding principle in mitigating these kinds of situations. There is an element of trust that has been damaged between an employer and employees where you then see tempers rising in the heat of the moment.
“Clubs should meet their financial obligations and players also have to follow proper guidelines and protocols in line with their contracts when a club fails to honour that financial obligation,” Maringwa told the Daily News on Sunday.
The former Warriors and Dynamos midfielder said in recent years they have been guiding a lot of players on such matters but using appropriate channels is a long process hence some choose the combative way.
“Some are patient enough to see the labour process through and eventually they will appreciate and have an idea of how to handle his/her case in future.
“We are particularly happy now that there will be a national dispute resolutions chamber at the association that will be in place I think before the start of the season to mitigate these contractual disputes in a quickest possible time,” Maringwa added.
Prominent Makepekepe supporter Ray “Mawaya” Kapondoro concurred with Maringwa that the club is lacking proper structures to deal with such cases.
“I believe there must be a defined system within the club. There must be someone responsible with the welfare of players, like a chief executive not a situation where players deal directly with your employer.
“It’s not a healthy situation because at the end of the day you end up losing respect. Like what happened last week, it was really bad. There are ways in which these things can be handled not that confrontational it scares away even sponsors,” Kapondoro said.
The club has also been castigated for lowering their brand after accepting and publishing pictures of their players receiving donations from well-wishers.
“This is not a laughing matter. It started with those Mickey Mouse donations then came the maize issue before things came to a standstill when players stormed the vice president’s offices.
“I was really touched by the plight of players; I believe it’s something that needs urgent address by the club bosses. I think the association needs to speed up the process by bailing out clubs during these trying times.
“Of course what the players did is not commendable but at the same time we also need to understand things are not okay. Remember these players are family men and football is their only source of income and if you don’t give them their salaries then how are they going to survive?”