THE Hongkong Football Association have issued lifetime bans on three officials of Michelotti after the club failed to meet a deadline to pay players almost $1 million in wages. Michelotti, who have not paid their players for almost four months, were given until June 30 to sort out their debts. But Michelotti chairman Alfred Yuen asked for a 24-hour extension to the deadline because he said a new sponsor was waiting to take over the club next season. When the Hongkong FA offices at Ho Man Tin closed yesterday evening with the players still out of pocket and no official announcement from the club, the sport's governing body in the territory carried out their threat to ban president Chan Mo-wang, chairman Yuen and secretary Sek Kam-wah. The disciplinary action, which took effect yesterday, means the three cannot participate in any football business in Hongkong or even enter a stadium where a match is taking place. Sek, however, is appealing against the decision because it would end his career with TVB, for whom he works as a sports reporter. He claims he is owed $25,000 by the club and that he is a victim just like the players. In another development, 14 players and staff of Michelotti wrote to the FA asking for assistance in retrieving their money. Michelotti's three full-time expatriate players - Tony Sealy, who has signed for Eastern next season, Alan Walsh and John Bottomley - are owed around $400,000 in wages, bonuses, housing allowances and flights. A further $500,000 is owed to part-time overseas players Richard Lant and Mark Grainger and to the 14 Chinese players and officials. FA chairman Victor Hui said: ''I have said many times that the Hongkong FA cannot do anything about the money. ''We can only take action against the officials to ban them from taking part in football management.'' FA secretary Vincent Yuen spoke to Michelotti chairman Alfred Yuen yesterday afternoon and said the talks had produced two points. ''Up until the present moment Michelotti cannot solve their problems but will try their best to do so as soon as possible,'' said Yuen. ''Second, they still have interest in participating in the First Division next season. ''As for the letter from the 14 players and staff, we suggest they go to the labour department. ''We will impose pressure on Michelotti to resolve it and also call a meeting of the FA councillors before the AGM on July 18, which is the deadline for teams to register for next season.'' Michelotti, Italian watch and sports goods manufacturers who sponsor a club registration held by the Po Chai Pills Athletic Association, are in their second season in Hongkong football. They finished eighth in their first season - only one place above therelegation zone - but climbed to a creditable fourth spot this season, behind Eastern, South China and Instant-Dict. But the club had financial problems early in the season and a proposed budget of around $4.5 million ran out well before the end of the campaign, leaving the players out of pocket. Bottomley and Walsh have returned to England, leaving Sealy to try and recover the money on their behalf.