Official attacks HKFA over its player insurance

PUBLISHED : Monday, 14 January, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 14 January, 2008, 12:00am

A leading club official has criticised the Hong Kong Football Association for failing to carry their share of insurance and medical costs for players hurt when playing for Hong Kong.

Playing for the League XI side, South China striker Detinho was repeatedly clattered into by Guangdong players during the away leg of the annual Interport series in Foshan last week.

The Brazilian was replaced in the second half of the match and was forced to miss the Caroliners' mid-week league clash with Lanwa Redbull due to a hamstring problem, resulting from the bruising encounter.

'Detinho is still under treatment and may need to miss two more matches,' said South China team convenor Steven Lo Kit-shing. 'His absence has affected us but we can't do anything other than wait patiently for his recovery.

'However, what annoys me most is the club have to bear all the medical costs.

'He played for Hong Kong and helped Hong Kong win honours, but at the end of the day, the club have to suffer.'

The towering striker scored twice in the 3-0 opening leg win against Guangdong, contributing hugely to the eventual success of the SAR side who won 4-0 on aggregate, retaining the title they won last year. The Brazilian also leads the scoring charts with 19 goals (16 in the league and three in the Senior Shield).

Lo, who was team manager for the League XI appointed by HKFA, said he knew the association did not buy insurance for the players and called for this to change.

'The club has to supply players so it's not right we also have to bear the medical cost if the players suffer injuries,' said Lo. 'The football association must reconsider its policy.'

Lo, who is also likely to be team manager of the League XI for the Lunar New Year tournament, also asked the association to review its prize-money system which has been used for more than a decade.

'The players receive only a small amount of incentive even if they win a tournament like the Interport and this amount has not increased for a long time,' said Lo. 'As team managers, we also provide additional bonuses from our own pockets. We do not mind doing this for the benefit of players, but the association must also take positive steps.'

Players receive HK$2,000 each from the association if they win a match and, according to Lo, that money is always paid very late, sometimes even at the end of the season, long after the matches are played.

Lo and another team manager, Chow Man-leung, paid out a bonus of HK$100,000 to the players on Saturday night for the victory in this year's Interport tournament against Guangdong, just six days after the second leg, which was played on Sunday January 6.

Scoring machine

Goals tallied by South China's Brazilian forward Detinho in all domestic competitions this seaso: 19