TUKWILA, Washington – Alfred Riedl has threatened to take further action through FIFA against the Indonesian football association, claiming he was fired as national team coach for political reasons.
The newly elected chairman of the Indonesian association - known as the PSSI - Djohar Arifin Husin said Riedl was replaced because he had not signed a contract and instead had been working as a national coach on a personal agreement with the former former deputy chief. Nirwan Dermawan Bakrie.
Riedl though insists he did have a signed contract.
''Of course I had a contract signed by members of the PSSI who were in charge at the time,'' Riedl told The Associated Press on Thursday. ''They should not have said this because it doesnt make them look good.''
The former Austria, Vietnam and Laos coach said he was caught in the middle of a political power play.
''The reason I was fired was because the PSSI now has a new president and committee members who all come from the ruling party and replaced the old regime who were opponents in a different party. They are political people and this was a political decision.
''I can prove this and I will have to prove it because if they dont pay me, I will take the case to FIFA.''
A bitter and protracted process ended with Djohar replacing former federation chief Nurdin Halid who was unpopular in the country and had been told by FIFA he could not stand for re-election due to a criminal record.
Riedl, who served as Indonesia coach for just over a year, had become popular with fans after taking Indonesia to the final of the 2010 Suzuki Cup - a regional Southeast Asian championship - and was seen as having introduced discipline to the team.
He will be replaced by Dutchman Wim Rijsbergen, who will take charge for the two-legged 2014 World Cup qualifier against Turkmenistan. The first match takes place in Ashgabat on July 23 with the second leg in Jakarta five days later.