Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) club Gunners and Zimbabwe Saints could find themselves in deep trouble after they refused to pay match officials who officiated in their mid-week matches on Wednesday.
PSL chief executive officer Kenny Ndebele yesterday confirmed the two teams did not pay match officials who handled their matches.
Gunners played and lost 1-0 to Chicken Inn at Larfarge while Zimbabwe Saints were at home to Black Mambas where they drew 1-1 and were relegated.
“They are not the only two who have not paid match officials. We have been having problems in recent weeks. Actually four teams have not paid match officials since the mid-season break.
“We have allowed these clubs to continue playing even if they had not paid match officials but we will deduct that money from their prize money at the end of the season,” said Ndebele.
He added: “For some of these clubs, it’s not a question of them refusing to pay referees, but they can’t . . . money will not be available.
Some of them cannot attract big crowds in their home matches, so they will not be able to pay. So we have decided the best way we can settle it is to deduct from their end-of-season prizes.”
In league matches, the team that is at home pays match fees for match officials. If the referees are from another town, the home team also caters for their travelling expenses.
This week, Gunners won’t have any worries of paying match officials as they travel to outgoing league champions Motor Action.
A top-four finish is now the top priority for the two teams and the winner of this match will almost be certain of achieving it.
The Mighty Bulls, who surrendered their title race last Wednesday after losing to Dynamos, currently occupy the fourth position with 45 points.
Gunners on the other hand are on sixth position on the log and a shock 1-0 loss to Chicken Inn last Wednesday was a huge setback to their season’s aspirations.
Chando Kupisa are on 41 points and will be looking to beat Motor Action and then win their last match of the season against Hwange at home.