TSHAKHUMA FC run the risk of punishment from Fifa after having failed to respond to a letter of demand from their former coach Vladislav Heric, dated 24 July.
The new PSL side were given until 13 August to respond and bring in evidence to Fifa's players' status committee of the rage from the Serbian coach who is demanding over R5 million in damages after claims that his contract was ineluctably terminated in June, while they were still in GladAfrica Championship.
Mosala Mulaudzi's club could be ordered to settle their debt with Heric and failure to do so could see them run risk of being banned if they do not meet the remedial requirements sought by their former coach, following allegations of a "breach of contract".
Heric, through K4 Alchemy Consult Attorneys, took Tshakhuma to Fifa after his contract, which started on 10 December last year, was allegedly terminated before it expired, instead of 1 July as per their agreement, which had a two year option to renew.
"From the commencement of the agreement to date the respondent (Tshakuma) has to date failed, refused and/or neglected to make full payment of the applicant's monthly salary due for the month of December 2019... accordingly, an amount of R30 000 is due and payable," said Fifa in a statement seen by SunSport.
In full, since the commencement of the contract on 20 December last year to June this year, as first agreed in their year-one agreement, the club was due to have paid Heric, which the Serbian claims as loss.
But according to a letter sent to Mulaudzi by Fifa on 24 July, the Serbian coach, who is now with Cape Town Spurs, is demanding over R5m for all losses incurred, should he had led the team to promotion to the PSL, and took charge of the team until 2022.
Speaking to SunSport this weekend, Heric confirmed that he was only paid half of his December salary and the remainder of the salaries, including that of January to June, were not paid.
He stopped coaching the club on 17 March before the Covid-19 enforced lockdowns disrupted the season.
Said Heric: "They didn't settled with me and now we wait for the judgment from Fifa, let's see what's going to happen now. At this stage I'm not aware if TTM responded to Fifa or not, that can only be answered by Fifa. I only received one salary. The chairman has not spoken to me since in anyway. I do not want to talk about numbers at this stage, I think it will be inproper of me to do that."
Among demands from Heric:
Payment of outstanding monthly salary.
Payment of the promotion play-off position and promotion in the amount of R1m and interest thereon at the rate of 5%.
Return air tickets (Cape Town to Belgrade) valued at R48 608 and return air tickets (Cape Town toPolokwane) value of R12 218, amounting to R85 526 for the period 10 December 2019 to 30 June.
Payment in the amount of R4,910m and 5% interest.
Payment of the applicant's legal costs including travel and accommodation costs as a result of the dispute if applicable, and any other further and/or alternative relief.
In its legal arguments, Fifa says "it is a fact that the respondent had deliberately and unequivocally showed intentions that it no longer wanted to be bound by the agreement".
"We (Fifa) respectfully submit that the conduct of the respondent reflects its lack of intention to respect the agreement. The respondent's conduct has a direct impact on contractual stability and has greatly prejudiced the applicant," said the world football controlling body in its "Legal consequences of termination" clause.
Heric argues that on his first season with the club he could have earned R1,2m, R2,4m in the second season and R2,6m in the final year of his contract.
Tshakhuma CEO, Sello Chokoe, told City Press that Heric's "issue was a closed chapter".
"We suspended him for poor performance and he decided to take us to his lawyers. When we were in the bio-bubble we reached an agreement with his lawyers and paid him through his lawyers account," Chokoe is quoted by City Press.