DOHA, January 21. /TASS/. Italian coach of the Russian national football team Fabio Capello has no intentions of terminating his contract with the Russian Football Union over wage arrears, his assistant and Zenit St. Petersburg FC coach Sergey Semak told TASS on Wednesday.
Capello and Oreste Cinquini, the Russian football team’s general manager, have been unpaid for over seven months. According to recent media reports, RFU’s debt to Italian managers totals some 600 million rubles ($9.2 million).
Asked whether Capello would severe his contract with the RFU and leave the post of the national team’s head coach, Semak said “absolutely not.”
“There are numerous media reports about it but the information does not come from Capello himself,” Semak, who is currently with Zenit FC in Qatar for the club’s training session, said. “Capello is not in talks about terminating his contract.”
“Judging by the way he works, it is absolutely impossible to tell that he either intends to leave or cancel his contract. He implies all efforts to work at the maximum level with the Russian team.”
According to results of an inspection carried out in November by the Federal Agency for Labor and Employment (Rostrud) the debt stood at 181.5 million rubles, which ought to be repaid within a month, i.e. by December 19.
As the December 19 deadline passed, Rostrud announced that it decided to grant an appeal from the country’s governing football body and extended the date for RFU’s required wage arrears payment for another month, i.e. until January 19, 2015. Rostrud, however, imposed financial fines of 40,000 and 4,000 rubles on the RFU and its President Nikolai Tolstykh respectively for the failure to pay salaries on time.
The Italian manager was not paid again as the deadline expired on Monday and Rostrud ordered another sudden inspection of the RFU. In case Capello is not paid, the RFU faces a financial penalty and Tolstykh may be suspended from his post for the period between six months and two years.
The RFU experiences financial difficulties and as of December its budget deficit totaled 500 million rubles ($8.4 million). Following the session of the RFU’s Executive Committee last month, Tolstykh said that a special anti-crisis commission was intended to be set up to tackle the financial difficulties of the organization.
The Russian national squad experienced a string of setbacks over the past decade failing to qualify for the 2006 World Cup in Germany and 2010 championship in South Africa to the great dismay of the Russian football fans.
Things changed, however, when Italian phenomenon Capello took over the team as the head coach and managed to help the Russian national squad to qualify for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
The team, however, failed to clear the first stage of the much-anticipated global tournament putting their coach in the center of stern criticism and raising serious concerns in the country about the team’s performance in the next World Cup, which would be hosted by Russia in 2018.
However, Russia did not severe the contract with Capello after the Russian team’s performance at the World Cup in Brazil and the Italian manager also decided to stay with the Russian squad as the head coach until the year of 2018 as stipulated by the contract terms.
The country won the bid to host the 2018 World Cup almost four years ago in a tight race against the joint bid from England, Portugal and Spain and the joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.
Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.
The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 mentioned above cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital.