Usain Bolt leaves Central Coast Mariners ‘effective immediately’ after failing to agree contract
- Eight-time Olympic gold medallist fails to agree terms with Central Coast Mariners
- Jamaican Bolt had been on an indefinite trial with the A-League side
Usain Bolt’s professional football odyssey will continue away from Australia, it seems, after the Olympic sprint king abruptly left the Central Coast Mariners on Friday.
The A-League club confirmed eight-time Olympic gold medallist Bolt’s indefinite trial was over “effective immediately”.
“I would like to thank the Central Coast Mariners owners, management, staff, players and fans for making me feel so welcome during my time there,” Bolt said in a statement.
“I wish the club success for the season ahead.”
Anything is possible don’t think limits pic.twitter.com/bcLgxnBB8x
— Usain St. Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) October 12, 2018
Bolt’s time at the Mariners appeared to be on an upwards curve after he scored twice in a preseason friendly on his first start against Macarthur South West United last month.
“Anything is possible,” he tweeted after the match. “Don’t think limits.”
But it seems there was a limit on how much the Mariners were willing to lay out on a 32-year-old taking his first steps in the sport.
Both parties failed to reach a financial agreement, the club said, despite the Mariners trying – and failing – to find suitable third party funding “in a timely manner”.
Still, Mariners owner Mike Charlesworth had nothing but good words for the Jamaican legend.
“Despite the fact that we could not come to an agreement that would continue Usain Bolt’s football journey with the Central Coast Mariners, we’ve been thrilled to have the Olympic champion sprinter and world record holder as part of our club for these past eight weeks,” Charlesworth said.
“For the Mariners, it’s been a pleasure to work with Usain as he pursued his desire to become a professional football player.
“This has been a mutually beneficial partnership that brought an increased level of excitement and attention to both the Mariners and the A-League.”
Bolt is yet to comment on his exit from the Mariners, although he was reportedly offered a contract by Champions League chasing Maltese club Valetta FC last month.
“From day one, Usain dedicated himself to being part of the Mariners,” Charlesworth said. “He integrated very well into the team and made great strides as a footballer.”