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Ecuadoran Government Sanctions 21 Soccer Teams

Ecuadoran Government Sanctions 21 Soccer Teams

Posted by Juan Gavasa on October 14, 2014

Ecuadoran soccer players and lawmakers this Monday criticized the owners and management of national top tier teams for their lack of respect to the athletes and because they failed to comply with contracts.

“There is a lot of disrespect of the player as not only a professional but as a person," former player of Sociedad Deportivo Quito, Giovanny Espinoza told TeleSUR. "A lot of disrespect, many lies, they did not follow through with what was outlined in the contracts. I think there is a lot of abuse.”

The Ministry of Labor Relations recently announced sanctions against 21 top tier soccer teams, including fines totaling US$90,500 for failing to comply with contracts, including not registering players in the social security system, and irregular payment.

​Some players have complained they have not been paid since June. The Ecuadoran Soccer Federation has not responded to demands of better working conditions made during a brief players strike in July. Also, soccer players and lawmakers have expressed that reform to the Sports Law is critical.

“First, the law needs to be revised, then there have to be sanctions. For those that do not adhere to what is stipulated in the law," Agustin Delgado, National Assembly member and former soccer player said.

He explained that, "The law was created 25 years ago, so logically that law was made by the heads of clubs, in favor of themselves. So that is why we have to change this law and begin to exert that it is adhered to, and that those that do not follow the law are sanctioned.”

Proposed reforms to the 1948 labor code, expected to go through the National Assembly by the end of this year, are hoped to provide greater protection for players.

“The hope of the union and my own personal expectation is that the Minister of Labor Relations imposes in the new labor code effective demands that benefit those that work in soccer, and especially the players,” said Jorge Guzman, a leader of the Soccer Players Association of Ecuador.

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