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By ESPN Staff
Nov 3, 2011

Hearts players delay wage complaint

Hearts' players have opted to play a waiting game over their unpaid wages following discussions with manager Paulo Sergio.

Senior squad members at the Scottish Premier League club are still waiting for their wages, which were due on October 16, and are yet to be given a date when they can expect to receive their monthly income.

But following discussions with Sergio and assurances from Hearts director Sergejus Fedotovas - right-hand man to owner Vladimir Romanov - the Hearts players have chosen not to sign a letter of complaint addressed to Scottish Premier League chief executive Neil Doncaster at Hampden.

The players are understood to have been told that lodging the complaint with the SPL, with the possibility of invoking FIFA Article 14 for breach of contract with just cause, would exacerbate the situation and a collective decision was made to bide their time.

The Hearts squad have been working closely with the players' union, PFA Scotland, to resolve the issue and are fully aware of the implications.

PFA Scotland chief executive Fraser Wishart is currently attending the FIFPro Congress in Tel Aviv, Israel, and has been consulting widely on the matter. FIFPro are the global players' union.

Wishart said in a statement: ''I am delighted that the pressure applied by the union has led to a commitment by the manager. Our members have no wish to resort to legal action; they simply want to be paid. They have shown a great deal of patience and professionalism throughout.

''If, however, the salaries are not forthcoming they reserve the right to instruct PFA Scotland to involve the SPL and take any other action that is appropriate. I have been speaking to some of the world's top sports lawyers at the congress and our members are privileged to have this expert knowledge to hand.''

It is not the first time Hearts have delayed payment of their staff and players could seek to leave Tynecastle in the January transfer window.

Hearts are over £30 million in debt and believed to be prepared to listen to offers for their players, with Lithuanian businessman Romanov this week expressing his reluctance to continue to plough money into the club.

With no home fixture until the November 26 SPL clash with Inverness, payment of the players' wages depends on Romanov stumping up the cash.

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