Once Caldas face suspension over wages

BOGOTA - Former South American champions Once Caldas became the second Colombian team in a week to face a 30-day suspension on Tuesday over unpaid wages to their players.

Caldas owe the squad 1.08 billion Colombian pesos ($600,000) in wages and social security payments, according to local media reports, and had been given five days' grace to pay up, governing body Coldeportes said on its website.

"If Once Caldas gets up to date with its labour and social security obligations towards its sportsmen... this suspension measure will be lifted immediately," Coldeportes added.

Deportes Quindio were handed a suspended 30-day ban last week over unpaid wages before the club agreed to meet part of the debt.

They fielded a junior side swamped 5-0 by Millonarios on April 10 while their professional players were on strike, but played and won last weekend.

Failure to pay on time is endemic in Colombian professional soccer with several first and second division clubs in debt to their players.