Courtesy of the Standard
It was not immediately clear where Ze Maria’s next destination is but it is believed he has received offers from Europe and Asia.
He is leaving alongside his Brazillian assistant Marco Aurelio while fitness trainer Sandro Fantoni will remain at the club.
While in his resignation letter he did not disclose the real reason behind his shock resignation, sources within the club confided in us that the club could not meet the demands he had placed on the table over the last few months.
The coach seems to have planned his exit while on a two week holiday in his native Brazil during the brief KPL break.
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He returned last Thursday and traveled to Tanzania on Saturday where he was on the bench when Gor Mahia thrashed AFC Leopards 3-0 to win the inaugural Sportpesa Supercup.
“Yes, the coach has handed me his resignation letter. He does not state the real reason behind his resignation,” Rachier said.
“We have no option but to accept his decision. He has been a loyal servant to the club since he took over and we wish him well wherever he is headed to,” added the Gor chairman.
Rachier however stated they had never been bad blood between the club management and the coach who won bronze with Brazil in the 1996 Olympic games in Atlanta, USA.
“We do not owe the coach anything. Our relations were very cordial. He has resigned over unpaid dues, we are up to date with his salary and allowances.”
Ze Maria expressed gratitude for working at Gor Mahia, which he termed as the biggest club in the country.
In his resignation letter, Ze Maria said: “Dear Mr President, I hereby submit my resignation request to terminate my contract from the position of the head coach I have held since March 2016 to date. Thank you for the consideration and trust given to me by the club throughout my working period here. I must also mention the great pride I had in training this giant club, the biggest in Kenya, where I had the privilege of winning some trophies, losing others, seeing many talents grow and see them playing for the National Team. Thank you very much, I will always be a fan of you.”
But our source says there has been unease with some players openly criticising the coach over his high handedness.
Midfielder Collins Okoth “Gatusso” has been sidelined for the better part of the season after falling out with the coach while defender Haron Shakava was omitted from the line up in the game against Posta Rangers for questioning him.
“For the better part of this year, he has been demanding salary increment yet we have a contract that clearly stipulates when his salary is supposed to be increased,” an official of the club intimated adding that the coach also enjoyed a good package in house allowance and winning bonus.
In his stint as coach, Ze Maria guided Gor Mahia to a trophy less season last year after the club had won three consecutive league titles.
Gor lost the league title to Tusker and the Top Eight trophy to Muhoroni Youth and were also tossed out of the GOTv Shield by Nzoia United.
But he managed to take the 15 time champions off relegation zone to finishing second in the league and he leaves the club at the top of the table this season.
Meanwhile, the club has said assistant coach Zedekiah Otieno will be in charge of the technical bench as they shop around for Ze Maria’s replacement.