Maritzburg United on Friday dismissed coach Ian Palmer, ostensibly because of a dispute over his wish to attend a professional licensing coaching course over the next months, but at the same time confirming speculation over the last months that his tenure at the club was unsteady.
Palmer is the fourth managerial casualty of the Absa Premiership series.
The club issued a statement late on Friday detailing the fall out with Palmer, which they said started last week when Palmer returned from the Christmas holidays requesting leave from January 15-29 to attend the first two-week module of the coaching course.
Maritzburg said they were then taken by surprise when Palmer, who joined them last April, asked for financial assistance to attend the SAFA-run course and more time off to attend later modules of the professional license course in the coming months.
Chairman Farouk Kadodia met with Palmer on Wednesday to express his concern that the course would take up 76 days of Palmer’s time until the end of the season, rendering the coach part-time. The club statement said Palmer was asked to review his request but insisted on attending the course.
“The club views Mr Palmer’s conduct as a repudiation of his contract of employment. The club have made every effort to prevail upon Palmer not to act in this fashion but rather to comply with the contract but those efforts have been treated with a distinct lack of respect or regard for the requirements of professional football,” the club claimed.
“Consequently the club had no option but to accept the repudiation and cancel the contract,” the statement said.