Zimbabwe’s Highlanders freeze Mark Harrison’s contract

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Zimbabwean football giants Highlanders have suspended coach Mark Harrison’s contract owing to the inactivity caused by the global Covid-19 pandemic.

The Briton, who joined the club at the start of the year, will be returning to his homeland on Saturday after a mutually agreeing to freeze the gaffer’s agreement.

Both Harrison and Bosso announced the coach’s departure at a joint press conference at the club’s offices on Tuesday.

“We met with the club and agreed that for now I return to the UK and be with my family. For now, nobody knows when football will be played. It is not easy, not something we wanted,” Harrison said.

He admitted the development was disappointing, as he was “looking forward to the challenge and working for a big club with so much on offer”.

He added that it was going to be some exciting time “without a doubt”.

“I do believe we would have had an exciting season; we would have played good football. Now it has been put at the back, everything is on hold now and hope when we start, we can pick up.”

Although the club insist Harrison remains their coach, it remains unclear whether he will continue to get his salary. Highlanders are heading for tough times, as they urgently need financial backup to remain afloat following a termination of their deal by principal sponsors NetOne. The mobile network operator has been paying salaries of the club’s first team players and technical staff. However, Harrison’s salary, in the region of R80, 000 is reportedly paid by a group of supporters.

“I don’t disclose my financial situation and everywhere I go, I don’t discuss my contract other than my family. What is important is that I have made arrangements with the football club and both parties are happy. We take it a day at a time, and we don’t know what will happen in the near or long future,” Harrison said.

Club spokesperson Ronald Moyo, pictured with Harrison in the main picture, would not be drawn to comment on the NetOne deal.

According to Moyo, ‘Bosso’ have not negotiated for “contract suspensions” with other members of their staff other than Harrison.

The former Southampton and Stoke City goalkeeper has had three coaching stints in South Africa, with Mpumalanga Black Aces, Chippa United and Golden Arrows.

RELATED STORY: MONEY WOES: Zimbabwe’s giants Highlanders yet to pay April salaries

By Mthokozisi Dube

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