Mr Ugonna Ozuruigbo, Deputy Speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, said on Thursday that a new management team would be constituted for relegated Heartland FC, to return the club to the premier league.
Ozuruigbo told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Owerri that only the General Manager, Mr Godfaith Otuemena, would be retained.
Ozuruigbo, who was recently appointed to supervise the club by Gov. Rochas Okorocha, said the new management’s mandate was to return the club to premier league in 2017/2018 season.
“The governor has said that only the General Manager, Mr Godfaith Otuemena, will be retained, others should reapply to the new technical committee, if they still want to serve Heartland.
“I can’t work with the management that took Heartland to relegation because some of them sabotaged the club for selfish gains.”
He dismissed claims by the club’s fans that the government pushed the team into relegation after it starved it of fund.
“The problem with the club is not funding, it was internal sabotage by some members of the management team that led to the relegation.
“The club got a total of N75 million from the state government and LMC within two months plus the conventional monthly subventions to the club.
“Three key players of the club were sold to FC Ifeanyi Ubah by the management without consulting the Chief Coach, that is sabotage,” he said.
Heartland FC was relegated at the end of 2015/2016 season. The club’s new supervisor said they would try to ensure that Heartland retained most of its players, to help the club compete favourably at the lower division.
“Division two is more difficult and tasking, some of the players have indicated interest to remain in the club,” he said.