Saturday August 27 2011
Players warn of extended strike

The Players' Association has warned the Serie A strike could go beyond the opening weekend “if clubs don't change their attitude.”

The AIC called off the Week 1 fixtures, set for today and tomorrow, after the union of Serie A clubs (Lega) refused to sign a collective bargaining contract.

“If the clubs don't come together to talk and change their attitude, then it will be difficult to negotiate,” Vice-President Umberto Calcagno told Sky Sport Italia.

“We proffered a hand towards the Lega, including yesterday's proposal of an interim agreement to avoid the strike.

“It's difficult to know when we could see each other for talks again. We are available 24/7, but for the moment there are no meetings lined up.”

There are fears the strike could continue, though due to the break for international duty, Serie A won't kick off until the weekend of September 11.

“We hope the Lega can make a more organic proposal that respects the agreements already reached in recent months, otherwise we risk failing to target the real problem.

“Our interim deal was meant to stand by those agreements for a year so we could sit round a table again, but it was not accepted.”

The Lega have accused the AIC of refusing to accept a solidarity payment to help unemployed players, but the most important issue is that of players in contract disputes being forced to train separately from the squad.

“The players have always said we'd respect the law with regards to the solidarity contribution and there is absolutely no problem there,” assured Calcagno.