BSP-02 Bolt ‘offered cut-price deal’ in Australia – media





Bolt ‘offered cut-price deal’ in Australia – media

SYDNEY, Oct 22, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – Australia’s Central Coast Mariners have
offered sprint superstar Usain Bolt a contract, reports said Monday, but the
club’s coach said he knows nothing about it.

The eight-time Olympic champion has been on trial with the A-League side
since arriving in August to fulfil his dream of becoming a professional

He scored two goals in a pre-season friendly last week and on Thursday
turned down a two-year, trial-free deal from cashed-up Maltese champions

“I can confirm Usain has been offered a contract by Central Coast
Mariners,” the Jamaican’s agent Ricky Simms told the BBC.

The club had no immediate comment on Monday, but Sydney’s Daily Telegraph
said he had been offered only a fraction of the Aus$3 million (US$2.1
million) that his management had discussed months ago when the prospect of a
trial was first mooted.

The newspaper said the potential deal put together in May — on the premise
of Bolt passing a trial first — was based on Football Federation Australia
contributing Aus$750,000 and other sponsors also topping it up.

Mariners owner Mike Charlesworth had initially pledged Aus$1.5 million, but
the deal now offered to the sprinter was much less than this, it added.

The 100m world-record holder, who retired from athletics last year, has
previously tried out with clubs in Germany, South Africa and Norway.

The 32-year-old’s form so far has been criticised by several pundits, but
his two goals captured the imagination of the sporting public.

Club coach Mike Mulvey said he had heard nothing of an offer, and cast
doubt on whether Bolt, who likes to play up front, would make the grade given
the quality of players he already has at his disposal.

“You have a look at our front line today and you wonder whether he could
get into any of those positions. Wouldn’t you?” Mulvey said after the team
drew their opening A-League game of the season 1-1 away to Brisbane Roar on

“I do appreciate how important this story is for the rest of the world.
You’re just talking about speculation. I don’t know anything about what
you’re talking about and that’s God’s honest truth.”

The Mariners boast Aston Villa striker Ross McCormack on their payroll,
after the Scottish international agreed a season-long loan deal.

They also have Tommy Oar, who has played 28 times for the Socceroos, along
with Connor Pain, who cleverly scored their goal on Sunday.

BSS/AFP/MSY/0922 hrs