Neuchatel chaos escalates as Swiss roll out sanctions
Swiss football is in a state of chaos as the Russian-owned club Neuchatel Xamax fired four players, one day after the club was docked four points for breaching licensing regulations.
The Swiss Footballers' Union (SAFP), describing the situation as unacceptable, also claimed that players at the club had still not been paid their wages for November and December.
Neuchatel, where new owner Bulat Chagaev fired four coaches in his first four months after taking over in May, had already been docked four points in December. The latest sanction was imposed for failure to pay social security contributions in October and comes just days after FC Sion were deducted 36 points for fielding ineligible players.
Chagaev, a businessman from Chechnya, bought the club in May saying he wanted to take them into the Champions League. During the summer, he sacked the club's administrative staff and ended all sponsorship contracts.
They began the new season with a 3-0 home defeat by FC Lucerne, prompting the club to fire Brazilian 'keeper Rodrigo Gallato after one game.
At this rate, they'll be doing well to finish the season with 11 players.