Disrupting the trend of bans and fines that seems to be the norm with national-level football these days, the Football Association of Zambia have paid off their former coach Dario Bonetti to avoid FIFA sanctions.
Dario Bonetti was in charge of the Chipolopolo from July 2010 to October 201l before he was sacked despite already qualifying for the 2012 African Nations Cup. The French man who was owed $432, 000 filed a complain to FIFA against the Football Association of Zambia and a hearing had been set for August.
Zambia’s sports minister Vincent Mwale told parliament: “The Football Association of Zambia (Faz) decided to terminate Bonetti’s contract without prior consultation with the Ministry of Youth and Sport.
“According to Faz, the coach was handpicked and was not screened for international experience and African experience.
“The Faz president had said that the players had complained about Bonetti’s poor football knowledge and lack of respect for players.
“In order for the country not to suffer Fifa sanctions, which could entail the country not being able to participate in international tournaments, the ministry requested for intervention from the treasury for special funding to quickly settle the issue.”
It seems that Zambia decided to take measures to avoid facing the same fate as their neighbours Zimbabwe, who have been banned from the 2018 World Cup qualifiers for similar reasons. Hopefully this case of not paying coaches does not become a trend for African football.