Swiss side FC SIon sack nine players amid Coronavirus cancellations

The global pandemic has stopped leagues all around the world and the Super League outfit have taken drastic steps to stem the financial bleeding

Swiss club FC Sion have sacked nine players with immediate effect for refusing to take an unemployment settlement in the light of the coronavirus stopping play in the Super League in Switzerland.

The entire squad was contacted by WhatsApp message by president Christian Constantin on Tuesday. Constantin’s message asked the players to take a “technical unemployment” deal which would see them get a payment of around 12,000 francs.

The players were given until Wednesday at noon to respond and, although many of them refused or failed to respond, only nine were let go. Many of those players had contracts set to expire at the end of June. 

Christian Zock, Alex Song, Pajtim Kasami, Ermir Lenjani, Xavier Kouassi, Birama Ndoye, Johan Djourou, Mikael Facchinetti and Seydou Doumbia now find themselves dismissed without notice and without a club as world football has ground to a halt in the face of the pandemic.

The Swiss Players Union, the SAFP, has protested the dismissals, calling them unfair, while the players are reported to be seeking legal advice.

The SAFP wrote a letter in which they said: “We hope these unfair dismissals will be cancelled immediately and that discussions will be started on possible alternatives.”

In neighbouring Germany, Borussia Monchengladbach players agreed to take a reduction in wages in order that the club could carry on paying non-playing staff.

French Ligue 1 club Amiens have asked their players to consider similar measures.

In England, meanwhile, Manchester United made a pledge to their casual staff that their wages would be paid, even if the Premier League season were to be cancelled or play out behind closed doors.

Either scenario would see a drastic reduction in the incomes of part-time matchday and non-matchday staff at the Old Trafford side.

Chelsea have offered their hotel to health service staff in England, as have hotels owned by Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs.

Lower league clubs in the U.K. are already feeling the inch with Barnet laying off all non-playing staff earlier this week.

Sion are the first club in one of Europe’s top divisions to have released playing staff though they are not going without a fight.