Jacksonville Armada move to terminate all player contracts

Jacksonville Armada - New York Cosmos

by DAVE MARTINEZ

The Jacksonville Armada players gathered last week for a series of practice sessions under a cloud of uncertainty.  On Wednesday afternoon, their future became clear.

Or perhaps a better word is bleak.

Sources tell EoS that Armada ownership has officially made the call to terminate all player contracts. The decision was made public to the players on Wednesday afternoon. Despite players participating in practice sessions last week, they will not be paid out for the month of December. Furthermore, players with multi-year contracts will not be compensated for the remainder of their deals either. As originally reported by Bob Williams of the Telegraph, Armada players were asked to sign non-disclosure agreements ahead of their dismissal — a request that was roundly rejected. Williams also reveals the team no longer has a communications director due to apparent layoffs in the front office.

The news comes just over a week from a similar situation with the New York Cosmos, where ownership followed staff furloughs with a mass release of their roster.

As reported by EoS, the Armada have already notified NASL that they will not be a part of the competition, in whatever form it may or may not take. However, with their ownership situation rumored to be in flux and uncertainty with their home grounds, it is not clear whether a USL jump will happen in time for the 2017 season.

UPDATE (2:09 P.M.)

Whether a reaction to this afternoon’s piece or a change of heart from ownership, players who have been released will now be paid through the second week of the December. However, the team will not pay the final two weeks of 2016.

Also, players under multi-year deals will be dealt with in a case by case basis. Unlike the Cosmos situation, some of the contract verbiage must be sorted in the longer term deals before ultimately cutting the chord.

Again, ownership has indicated they want all players to be released. The immediacy of that demand, however, cannot be met across the board due to the above circumstances.

More on the story as this situation unfolds …