Usain Bolt a Reported Target for Unnamed European Club, '2-Year Offer' Made

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistOctober 15, 2018

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 12:  Usain Bolt of the Mariners celebrates scoring his first goal during the pre-season friendly match between the Central Coast Mariners and Macarthur South West United at Campbelltown Sports Stadium on October 12, 2018 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)
Matt King/Getty Images

Usain Bolt is reportedly drawing interest from football teams on both sides of the equator and is said to have received an offer from an "unnamed European club," while the Central Coast Mariners are mulling over a counter-proposal.

The Daily Telegraph in Australia reported Bolt has received a two-year contract from a team in southern Europe, which is understood to have been recently purchased by ambitious investors with UEFA Champions League goals.

Bolt has been on trial with Australian outfit Central Coast Mariners and recently scored twice in a trial game against Macarthur South West United just days before the 2018-19 A-League season gets under way.

The report read:

"The Daily Telegraph understands Bolt has been made a formal two-year offer to join a top-flight front-runner and even play in the team's upcoming cup final.

"The club has recently been acquired by ambitious investors with aspirations of qualifying for the group stages of the European Champions League."

Bolt has long been vocal about his dream of becoming a professional footballer after his sprint career came to an end. His goal is to one day represent Manchester United, the team he supports.

Speculation is already under way as to the identity of the European club that's made the two-year offer to Bolt - with one fan throwing a Serie A giant into the mix:

The 32-year-old has made the rounds in 2018 and spent some time training with German giants Borussia Dortmund before playing for Norwegian club Stromsgodset in a friendly against Norway's under-19 team.

But his trial at Central Coast Mariners has been the most successful of any stint so far and resulted in a brace on his first start for the club on Friday, the first of which was a smart finish, via ESPN:

Following the game, the Australian anti-doping authority (Asada) summoned him for a drugs test.

He took to Instagram (h/t BBC Sport) on Monday to express his confusion:

"So guys I've retired from track and field looking to become a footballer but look at this.

"How am I going to get a drug test today? I'm not even a professional footballer yet. Seriously.

"So I asked the lady, 'Why am I getting drug tested when I haven't signed for a club yet?' and she said they told her I'm an elite athlete so I have to get tested. Okay then."

Bolt has operated mainly as a left winger in his still budding football career and certainly possesses many of the physical traits needed to be a professional—much of the questions being asked relate to his technical acumen.

Ray Gatt of The Australian wrote that Soccer Stoppage Time, a community radio programme, said Football Federation Australia was not helping the Mariners' bid to keep Bolt due to delays in "marketing and marquee funding assistance."

The eight-time Olympic gold medal winner has already impressed in Australia, but due to his advanced age, Bolt has to be careful about what opportunities he takes considering he's starting his football career so late.

He spoke of his excitement to play ahead of Friday's friendly and indicated he was pleased with the progress he had made, via Sport360:

The European 2018-19 season is already under way, meaning Bolt would be wise to get a move on if he is to switch continents, or at least if he's to maximise his potential impact for his new club.

The Central Coast Mariners open their A-League season away to Brisbane Roar on Sunday, but there's a bit of mystery as to whether Bolt will still be at the club by then.


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