Zambia coach Herve Renard's pay dispute resolved

By Kennedy GondweBBC Sport, Lusaka
Frenchman Herve Renard
Renard has been in charge of Zambia since Dario Bonetti's sacking in October

The Zambian government and the country's football association have reached an agreement over coach Herve Renard's salary.

The Football Association of Zambia (Faz) appointed Renard in October to replace Italian Dario Bonetti.

The state had initially refused to meet the Frenchman's remuneration arguing it was not consulted over his recruitment.

However, following a meeting involving Faz, the sports council and minister of sport, the issue has been resolved.

"Whatever the amount in the contract, the government will find a way of helping to pay," sports minister Fackson Shamenda said at the end of the two-hour meeting on Monday.

"As government, we will help to pay for the coach but in future there is a need for consultations before hiring and firing.

"The hatchet has been buried and we have agreed to work together for the good of the game.

"We had an amicable meeting and everyone was frank.

"The public is interested in the results and not the squabbles. We want people to be watching less international sport and concentrate on our local game."

Faz spokesperson Erick Mwanza is delighted with the outcome of the meeting and hopes it will translate into positive results for Zambia at next month's Africa Cup of Nations.

"For us as an association, just like the Faz president Kalusha Bwalya has said, it was an excellent meeting and a happy one," Mwanza said.

"We all are serving the people of Zambia and our interest is football."

Renard took over the Chipolopolo for the second time in October, after Bonetti was fired just two days after overseeing Zambia's qualification for next month's Nations Cup.

Meanwhile, Renard is scheduled to announce his final squad for the finals - to be held in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea - on Friday.

Mwanza said the coach would finalise his squad after the team breaks camp tomorrow evening.

The team will then shift camp to South Africa next Tuesday for its final preparations.

Zambia has been drawn in Group A with Libya, Senegal and tournament co-hosts Equatorial Guinea.

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