MOSCOW - The Russian Football Union says it is close to paying national team coach Fabio Capello, who last received his salary six months ago.
Hit by financial problems, the RFU has been unable to meet Capello's reported $11 million-a-year salary but could now pay the arrears as soon as Wednesday, RFU president Nikolai Tolstykh said.
Tolstykh held meetings with Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko to find a way to solve the problem, Russian media reported, and did not rule out the use of government funds.
"We will use any official source (of funds) which can help the RFU to fulfil its obligations to Capello," Tolstykh was quoted as saying by the R-Sport agency.
Capello's unpaid wages have caused further problems for the RFU because of the recent collapse in value of the Russian currency.
The veteran coach's contract is believed to be denominated in euros but paid in rubles according to the exchange rate at the time of payment. That means a missed monthly salary payment from July may now cost the RFU over 40 per cent more in ruble terms than if it had been paid on time.
Capello has insisted the unpaid money is not a factor in Russia's poor form, with just one win in its last eight competitive matches.
The 68-year-old Italian said in October he was "getting close to the limit" of his patience with the salary situation, but has not expressed any discontent since. His contract runs through to 2018, when Russia will host the World Cup.
Also Monday, Tolstykh said the RFU had arranged to end a standoff with its own referees and match officials over unpaid wages, hours after the dispute became public.
The officials have not been paid for three months and are owed a total of over $440,000, a match inspector claimed Monday.