Dunfermline strike threat as wages delayed again

Jim Jefferies: Manager may not have a team to field tomorrow due to threat of strike action. Picture: Robert Perry

Jim Jefferies: Manager may not have a team to field tomorrow due to threat of strike action. Picture: Robert Perry

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DUNFERMLINE players are on the verge of strike action as they received only a fifth of their wages.

• Dunfermline players are set to strike by pulling out of game against Partick Thistle

• Squad have only received 20 per cent of wages

Squad members were told that they would only receive 20 per cent of their February pay, with a further 10 per cent due to arrive next week.

And the team are said to be considering pulling out of tomorrow’s First Division game against Partick Thistle.

The shortfall is the fifth wage delay in a row, and players are set to lodge a complaint with the SFL over the matter.

A representative from the club’s main sponsor Purvis Group, Bob Garmory, and honorary director Jim Leishman met with players yesterday to break the news.

The absence of club director Gavin Masterton from the meeting was criticised by players, who may now pull out of a crucial league clash to make plain their disgust.

An unidentified Dunfermline player told the Daily Record: “We have been paid just 20 per cent of our February wages and it’s embarrassing.

“There was a meeting where the sponsor was good enough to break the news about the money we are due but Mr Masterton was nowhere to be seen. He was due at the meeting but it looks like he wasn’t man enough to face us.

“All the players have direct debits coming off their accounts which will not now be met. Enough is enough as Mr Masterton has failed to honour guarantees he made us.”

Manager Jim Jefferies expressed sympathy for his players, saying: “I understand the lads’ anger. They now need to contact the bank and will struggle to pay mortgages, petrol money, phone bills.

“They are not on big money and now they are being told to survive on a tiny percentage of it. It has gone on too long and just gets more difficult.

“The players have gone through the proper channels but it is now getting to breaking point – what can they do except take drastic action?”

In a statement released last night, Masterton acknowledged the shortfall and admitted the delay was “not acceptable.”

“We can only pay 20 per cent of February wages due to our staff and players.

“We know this is not acceptable and we will try to get more funds out to staff as quickly as possible.

“The suggestion that the staff and players should somehow be happy they have jobs and accept late payment of wages is in the context of what has happened in other clubs when they have gone into administration which has resulted in immediate job losses.”

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