Arnett players in limbo

November 14, 2016
Patrick Roberts
Arnett Garden's Jabeur Johnson (left) goes for the ball while Tivoli Garden's Jermaine Johnson puts attempts to take control of the in their Red Stripe Premier League encounter at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex yesterday. The game ended 0-0.

Arnett Gardens FC executive body is yet to meet with the senior team players in order to settle salary dispute that surfaced earlier this month.

The players were upset by a salary dispute brought on by a restructuring exercise at their club, Arnett Gardens' players stayed away from training for three days last week ahead of their Red Stripe Premier League clash against rivals Tivoli Gardens last week Sunday at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex.

The club's hierarchy decided early last week to cut the squad size and chop the salaries of players as well as members of the technical staff.

"We have not had the meeting with the team due to the upcoming Local Government election," Arnett's president Patrick Roberts told STAR Sports yesterday.

Early last week after Arnett were held 0-0 against nine-man Tivoli Gardens, Roberts said that because sponsors withdrew their support, the club was faced with a situation that required these decisions.

"Following a meeting of the club's executive body last month, a decision was taken to cut salaries. Our budget was between $1.7 million to $2 million previously on a monthly basis," Roberts told STAR Sports after yesterday's match.


Additional funds


"We looked at our situation, which is not unique because of the economical crisis. What happened is that the chairman met with the other executive members last month to look at downsizing. We still tried to come up with the additional funds, but that did not happen.

"Some players were given the opportunity to leave or take a salary cut. We have a squad of 40 players with about seventy-five percent of the squad on contract," he also disclosed.

"We are trying to have a meeting with the players before the end of the week to explain the new situation moving forward. Now, we are looking at a budget of between $1.3 to $1.4 million in salaries. The PLCA gives each club $300,000 monthly, but we have to find creative ways to meet our budget," Roberts explained.

He also said the entire board was still in place, but there had been changes to the security arrangement.

"We have a change in the security as we need stricter gate control. We had also planned to play the game against Tivoli under lights, but because it was a planned television game, the 3 p.m. start time could not be changed," he further said.

Arnett's next game in the Red Stripe Premier League is against Boys' Town in the Trench Town derby on Wednesday at Barbican Complex, starting at 3 p.m.

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