Monrovia – FrontPageAfrica has been informed that players of the national football team of Liberia are yet to receive their winning bonus for the victory over Central African Republic in the World Club Qualifier match in November of 2021.
Lone Star on Tuesday, November 16, 2021 whipped the Wild Beasts of the Central African Republic 3 -1 in their final match in Group C in Morocco as they collected six points from six matches of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
Peter Wilson’s brace in the 8th and 72th minutes plus Marcus Macaulay two minutes’ goal were enough as the red, white and blue outfit collected all three points and finished 3rd in the group with Nigeria topping the group while Cape Verde finished second and CAR at the bottom of the group.
The game was played in Morocco as a Liberia home match because the SKD sports Complex was banned by FIFA.
According to an agreement between the government of Liberia, the Liberia Football Association and the players, each player and technical staff will receive a bonus of one thousand United States Dollars for a home victory while an away victory is two thousand united states dollars.
The Bonus is intended to serve as extra motivation for the players when they are selected for a major competition match but since the players won the match the Government is yet to release said amount to the players.
Many of the players said they don’t know why it is taking too long for the government through the LFA to release their bonus.
The players who are mainly professional with some locals that were selected for the game further said even though the amount they are to receive individually is not much, it is good to live by agreement.
“We believe this is not good for the national team, we are professional people and if you agree with something go by it, we have families who depend on us so we think it is time the government see reasons to make good their part of the agreement” a player who asked not to be named said.
Another player said, “It doesn’t look good for the image to be owing players bonuses for over two months when they have work for it come on let’s be serious here in Liberia.”
“I think this is some of the reasons many players don’t want to come play for the country because of this same thing; for me I am not use to this.
“How can I encourage others to come play for the country imagine we have a president who played football and this happening, the president needs to do something if he wants us to go to the nations cup or big tournament money need to be invested in the team,”
“We are one of the lowest paid national team players when it comes to appearance fees and bonus but yet with the small money we can not get it” he said.
“We accepted a fee of one thousand United States dollars for appearance and the same for home win and two thousand for away victory but they can give it to us, what was going to happen if we were going to win away from home or even four victories?”
When the LFA was reached by its president Mustapha Raji who is currently out of the country at the ongoing Nations cup in Cameroon referred our reporter to the acting president LFA Vice President For Administration Sekou Konneh who confirmed the news of the delay in the payment of the players bonus.
Mr. Konneh said they are waiting on the government through the ministry of Youth and sports to announce when the players will get their bonus.
He said the players have been on the back of the LFA for their bonus which is a set back to the national team.
But deputy Youth and Sports Minister for Sport G. Addy Quaime said the communication from the FA for the release of the players’ bonuses was just sent to MYS and they have forwarded it to the Ministry of finance and development planning.
“The LFA just sent the paperwork to the Ministry and we have since forwarded those paperwork to the Ministry of Finance for payment,” he said.
The deputy sports minister told our reporter he can not tell when the money will be released for the players and technical staff but they have made the request to MFDP.
Contrary to Ministry Quamie assertion that the paperwork from the LFA was sent to MYS late January FrontPageAfrica has in its possession the communication that was sent to Youth and Sports Minister D. Zeogar Wilson.
The Communication to Minister Wilson was sent on December 10, 2021 and was received by Elizabeth Zoe on the same December 10,2021.
The Communication states “I present you compliment on behalf of the Liberia Football Association, and herein request the payment of Twenty Nine thousand six hundred United States dollars ( US$29,600.00) as win bonus for the players andTechnical Staff of the national team of Liberia for the win against Central Africa Republic in the final match of the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifiers in Tangier Morocco on 6 November 2021” the communication signed by LFA secretary General Isaac Montgomery stated.
One may wonder why the deputy minister of sports will want to put the blame on the FA when the communication was sent to his boss a month ago.
FPA has also been informed that the players have refused to show up for the national team games until they get their bonus.
An insider at the FA disclosed that the national team had a friendly match with Libya in December but the players refused to show up on grounds that they wanted their bonus and the LFA had to tourn down the friendly.
Meanwhile the Government of Liberia still has a debt of Fifty Thousand United States Dollar in Morocco which is the balance for Airlines, accommodation and other expenses for the CAR match.
It Can be recalled that during President Weah state of the nation address he promised to invest in the national team to ensure the team reaches the nations cup or world cup.
“I regret to inform you that in spite of our efforts to upgrade the team, we still did not qualify for two of the main soccer events in the world: The World Cup and the African Cup of Nations. But we remain committed to doing more. We will dedicate more resources and scout the best talents for the team in the coming year,” said the Chief Patron of Sports.