Fan group collects funds to support unpaid players at North Macedonia’s storied Vardar Skopje

April 17 – The financial issues facing North Macedonia’s Vardar Skopje are deepening. The team from the capital who have won more championships than any other, is fighting for a return to the Macedonian first league, and for survival.

Vardar’s players and coaching staff play without salaries. The team is currently in second place in the Second division and has a real chance of promotion to North Macedonia’s elite division. However, the club’s management have continually failed to complete on commitments made to the players and fans.

The president of the club, Slobodan Krstevski, made a promise that he would pay part of the salaries owed to the players and employees after the match against Gostivar. However, this did not happen and one of the main fan factions of the team Vardar Komiti took matters into their own hands, collecting funds to give to the players as symbolic bonuses before Easter.

“After the game against Gostivar, we found out that the club’s “director” Slobodan Krstevski did not pay the promised minimum funds to the players. We will not comment on the man who betrayed our trust and that of the players. He does not deserve to be commented on.

“We just want to inform the public that we have decided on the eve of the biggest Christian holiday, Easter, to give symbolic financial assistance to all football players and the coaching staff. We know it’s not enough, that they deserve so much more, but it’s a sincere gesture that makes it clear that their pain is our pain too,” said a statement from Vardar Komiti.

“At the same time, we want to inform the public that before the start of the second half of the season, we have helped financially and contributed to the club continuing to function. We continuously help in every segment, from the purchase of medicines, to the provision of pitches, for all categories of football players, to the overall organization of all ongoing matches. We do all this so that our football players – heroes, can have decent playing conditions!

“Finally, we are grateful to the thousands of fans who recognized our struggle, who were yesterday in and around the stadium in Madžari. The fight for Vardar is a fight for Macedonia. Vardar is a national club, was and will remain as that. Therefore, it cannot be destroyed! The fight continues.”

Contact the writer of this story, Aleksander Krassimirov, at moc.l1681805845labto1681805845ofdlr1681805845owedi1681805845sni@o1681805845fni1681805845