Sundowns and Manqele have been at loggerheads since the striker was allegedly blocked by Sundowns from travelling to Port Elizabeth where he was expected to join Chippa United on loan.
Thereafter, Manqele was also stopped from training at Sundowns and was not paid on time for September – either by Sundowns or Chippa United.
In a letter to Chippa United on September 18, Sundowns demanded that Chippa pay the player. However, the Brazilians eventually paid him his salary three days late and have threatened in another letter to Chippa that they will invoice the Port Elizabeth club to recover the money.
And while the two clubs fight over who should pay, Manqele has secured a date of October 16 at the PSL’s Dispute Resolution Chamber where the matter will be heard involving all parties.
In the meantime, though, KickOff.com has established that Sundowns’ lawyers have now written a letter to the player’s representatives claiming that the Tshwane side is not at fault and go as far as suggesting that Manqele has no case since he was paid his salary.
Sundowns’ letter to Manqele’s representatives, written on October 7, reads as follows:
“We refer to the above and your e-mails to our client relating to an ‘Addendum’ to your client’s claim that is before the Dispute Resolution Chamber of the National Soccer League (“the DRC”) that your client intends to file.
“Our client’s position is that there is no dispute relating to the payment of your client’s salary for September 2014. As you would have noted from our client’s letter to Chippa United Football Club (“Chippa”) that our client forwarded to you, our client attended to the payment of your client’s salary immediately upon learning that Chippa had not paid your client his salary for September 2014. A copy of the letter and proof of payment were forwarded to you by our client on the same day and the contents therein will not be repeated in this letter.
“You acknowledged receipt of a copy of the letter and proof of payment via e-mail on 6 October 2014. Other than confirming receipt of your acknowledgement of receipt of a copy of the letter and proof of payment, our client does not intend to deal with each and averment made in your e-mail. Our client reserves its rights to deal with these averments at the appropriate time and forum, should the need arise.
“Our client’s position is that notwithstanding the fact that your client’s salary for September was paid three days late, the fact is that your client has now been paid his salary and there is no amount outstanding, or owed to your client, in this regard. Our client therefore does not understand how there can be a dispute about payment of your client’s salary.
“To the extent that your client believes that there is a dispute in relation to payment of his salary for September, you client is invited to refer a dispute to the DRC. Your client’s dispute referral must comply with the provisions of the National Soccer League (“NSL”) Constitution and Rules relating to the referral of disputes to the DRC. Our client does not agree to any non-compliance with the provisions of the NSL Constitution and Rules by way of an ‘Addendum’ to the current dispute before the DRC.”
However, Manqele’s agent Josiah Mphono is having none of it insisting that they went through the right channels, for the right reasons, in securing the date for the matter to be heard.
“We are happy we got the date [October 16] and the matter is now before the DRC. Yes, there is no dispute in terms of the salary, but he was paid late. He must be paid on or before the end of the month. Where is his signing-on fee? Why is he at home and not at work? We are surprised the Sundowns lawyers tell us about the rules, while they went ahead and signed a loan agreement with Chippa knowing about the loan quota.
“We are meeting the Players’ Union on Friday to discuss the matter further since they have been helping us a lot. As it stands, nothing changes and we will meet the two clubs at the PSL on the 16th,” Mphono adds.
Sundowns/Manqele saga timeline
31 July – Officially, Sundowns announce that Manqele has joined Chippa United on loan for the 2014/15 season.
1 August – Despite the announcement, KickOff.com discovers that the player is still at Chloorkop.
11 August – This website reports that the deal is off and the player was subsequently put on a weight loss programme by Sundowns.
22 August – We further reported that the player was then taking Sundowns to the DRC in his bid to leave the club.
27 August – Sundowns and Manqele smoke the peace pipe through a reconciliation process at the PSL which means the matter didn’t reach the DRC and the move to Chippa was back on.
2 September – Again the move falls through and KickOff.com reports that the reason could be that Chippa couldn’t register the player because they have apparently exhausted their loan quota which is five players per season.
5 September – We report that Manqele stops training with Sundowns.
8 September – Chippa United write a letter to Sundowns asking that the player is released to them to start training in Port Elizabeth while they sort out his registration, but Sundowns allegedly say no.
18 September – Sundowns write to Chippa demanding that they pay the player. Meanwhile, Manqele had claimed that he was not paid his signing-on-fee which was due at the end of August.
3 October – KickOff.com reports that Sundowns have paid the player’s salary for September and later on, we discover a letter from Sundowns to Chippa saying they will invoice them to recover the money.
7 October – This website reports that the matter between Sundowns, Chippa United and Manqele will be heard by the DRC on October 16.