By Osasu Obayiuwana
December 2 – Players of Zamalek, the 2019 CAF Confederation Cup winners, have been without wages for four months.
One of Africa’s wealthiest and best-known clubs, winning several domestic and continental titles, the Cairo-based club are currently in fifth place in the domestic league, behind leaders El Mowkaloon, city rivals Ahly, Pyramids and Ittihad Alexandria.
Zamalek had a chequered start to the new Egyptian season, which has put 50-year-old Coach Milutin Sredojevic, better known throughout the African continent as ‘Micho’ (pictured), under tremendous pressure from Mortada Mansour, Zamalek’s controversial club president.
Micho has been forced to work with players that are unhappy with the club’s management, as repeated promises to pay outstanding wages have not been honoured.
“How can the players be expected to perform, when they are not paid? How can the coach be expected to perform under these conditions? This is not how a club like Zamalek should be managed,” a source inside the club told Insideworldfootball.
Players of the club have stood solidly behind Micho, blaming the management of Mansour for the current crisis.
But it is unsure whether Micho will see out his remaining eight months with the Cairo club, with club sources saying that the manager is extremely disappointed with his working conditions, which have not improved despite making several complaints to the club’s management.
Under the controversial Mansour as club president, Zamalek has had a revolving door of managers.
Christian Gross, the former Tottenham Hotspur manager, Micho’s immediate predecessor at Zamalek, was sacked by Mansour, despite leading Zamalek to the 2019 CAF Confederation Cup, their first African trophy in 19 years.
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