Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Cameroon's departure delayed by pay dispute

YAOUNDE, Cameroon — Cameroon's players refused to board the plane taking them to Brazil on Sunday because of a long-running dispute over bonus payments.

The national federation later took out a loan to meet demands of about $125,000 per player (about $12,000 more than offered). The sport's governing body, FIFA, said the team would arrive in Brazil by today.

Cameroon's players — which include Europe-based stars such as Chelsea's Samuel Eto'o and Barcelona's Alex Song — have been in a dispute since last month, when they threatened to boycott practice. Reports in the West African nation said some refused to take part in Saturday's farewell ceremony.

The national federation said it had been unable to give players the money because it doesn't receive World Cup payments from FIFA until after the tournament. Each nation gets $1.5 million for preparations and is guaranteed at least $8 million in prize money.

Cameroon's players had previous disputes with the federation over bonus payments. One came ahead of the 2002 World Cup. In 2011 they refused to leave a hotel to travel to Algeria for a friendly.

Belgium: Tests on the right ankle of star striker Romelu Lukaku revealed no ligament damage. But his status for the opener June 17 was unknown. He was hurt during Saturday's 2-0 win over Tunisia. Belgium's other star striker, Christian Benteke, won't play in the tournament due to a ruptured Achilles tendon.

Too patriotic: A sign declaring Argentina as World Cup champ was removed. A sign at camp in Belo Horizonte on Saturday read, "Welcome future champions." National federation official Juan Carlos Crespi said it was his idea but it didn't go down well with captain Lionel Messi and coach Alejandro Sabella. A new sign says, "Welcome."

Few tickets for public: Of the 61,600 tickets available for Thursday's opening game between Brazil and Croatia, only 25,636 went to the general public, FIFA said. The rest went to commercial partners, broadcasters, organizers and hospitality programs.

No j-Lo: Jennifer Lopez will not perform the official theme song with Pitbull and Claudia Leitte at the opening ceremony because of "production issues," FIFA said. Lopez's representative declined to comment.

Cameroon's departure delayed by pay dispute 06/08/14 [Last modified: Sunday, June 8, 2014 10:59pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. John Calipari: Kevin Knox makes you shake your head and say 'Wow'


    Even though former Tampa Catholic star Kevin Knox left the USA Basketball U19 tryouts due to a hamstring injury, he still made quite an impression on coach John Calipari.

  2. How good is Florida Gators' Jim McElwain? We're about to find out


    The Gators' offense comes down to how head coach Jim McElwain handles the quarterback battle between Zaire and redshirt freshman Feleipe Franks. [ANDRES LEIVA | Times]
  3. Officially official: Malik Zaire, Jake Fruhmorgen join Florida Gators


    It's finally, officially official: Malik Zaire has joined the Florida Gators.

  4. Is this Dave Andreychuk's Hall of Fame year? Doubtful


    The Hockey Hall of Fame class of 2017 will be announced at 3 p.m. today. It's a downright crime that former Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk still isn't in, and his chances today are iffy with those in the first year of eligibility, including Daniel Alfredsson and Teemu Selanne. Others …

    Former Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk is 14th on the all-time goals list with 614.
  5. College World Series: Gators, LSU face off in all-SEC finals


    OMAHA, Neb. — The matchup for the College World Series finals bolsters the case for those who say the best baseball in the land is played in the SEC.

    Florida’s Brady Singer, delivering during a CWS win over Louisville last week, is scheduled to start tonight against LSU.