PFA Dragged Into Bonus Row
Earlier this summer, BFC denied that there were any issues regarding the paying of the players' bonuses for achieving promotion to the Premier League.
For some reason, I'm reminded of the Fleetwood Mac song 'Little Lies'.
As much as the Seasiders have been the victims of 'snotty' media reporting this summer, you have to say that some of it is deserved as the way in which our club is run gets flagged up as being truly tinpot and embarrassing now the international media are interested in us. There is truly nowhere to hide.
Yesterday, a story that has been brewing all summer potentially came to a head as the PFA were dragged into a row over the players' bonuses for achieving promotion to the Premier League.
All first team players at the club were promised a £5 million bonus pot by club president Valery Belokon to be shared out between them should they achieve promotion to the Premier League.
However, two months after promotion, they've still yet to be paid.
Now, we don't know the ins and outs of the bonus agreement, bar that the bonus pot was to be paid out on a 'per game' basis i.e. the more games you paid, the more money you got, and that the players have been offered various ways to take their bonuses (presumably for tax reasons?).
We also know that Mr Belokon was set to pay the bonus out of his pockets, but for whatever reason (we can't say much here because of the threat of legal action), he can't and instead the club is having to.
Indeed, it has been suggested to Vital that the terms of the bonus agreement are very loose, hence why the players have called in the PFA - they are worried that the club will find a way of pulling out of the deal.
Greedy? Perhaps. But they were promised the money (even if it was just a case or Mr Belokon being more jokey than serious initially), and for players like Keith Southern (who is believed to be owed nearly £500,000, twice his normal salary), it could be seen as a fitting reward for the committment to the BFC cause they have shown.
Now, the club maintains that the players will be paid as soon as the first Sky TV installment hits their bank account, but that still hasn't stopped the players from calling in the PFA, and yesterday, PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor voiced his take on the issue:
'We are aware of the situation at Blackpool.
'It has been reported to the Premier League and to the Football League.
'It looks like it will be paid in the first instalment of central funding from the Premier League when it comes through.
'I am confident that it will be paid. The club have told us that it will be.
'The players are not worried. They have been reassured that it will be paid. I'm not sure if it's at the level that has been reported but it is a big bonus that needs to be paid.
'It has been a nice little surprise for Blackpool to get themselves promoted but they have to live up to the agreement.'
On a related note, The Daily Mail has claimed that Owen Oyston has resigned from the board of directors at the club.
Nothing's ever easy when it comes to Blackpool, is it?