Sydney FC star Milos Ninkovic – undeniably one of the A-League’s best players – has revealed he is considering defecting to Macarthur FC when the expansion club debuts in the competition next season.
On the back of another sterling performance for the reigning champions, scoring one of Sydney’s five goals in a drubbing of Brisbane, Ninkovic told Fox Football he would make a decision on his future “in the next two weeks”.
“To be honest, I’ve got the offer from the new club. I’ve said many times that I’d like to end my career here but you never know,” Ninkovic said.
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And despite the season being less than a third of the way through, he has promised to decide his future within a fortnight.
“It’s best to decide as soon as possible. It’s better for my teammates to make a decision in the next two weeks.
“For me it’s very important to make a decision in the next two weeks. I want to just be focused on the game, that’s the only thing I want now.”
It would be incredibly surprising that Sydney would not do everything in their power to retain the decisive playmaker, but The Daily Telegraph reported that Macarthur were willing to pay him significantly higher than his current deal – and offer him a longer contract.
The Telegraph claims Sydney have offered the Serbian and former Johnny Warren Medallist a one-year contract worth something near to his current salary, estimated to be half-a-million dollars.
But Macarthur are willing to offer a two-year deal with the option of a third, and at approximately $750,000 per season, according to the report.
Sydney’s salary cap is already restrictively tight, and they may have to lose a number of players at the end of the current season – The Daily Telegraph reports a dozen players are off-contract, and based on their great performances almost across the board, it’s almost certain they will receive higher offers from elsewhere.
Sydney’s coach Steve Corica spoke about the situation on Friday, saying Macarthur’s interest came as no surprise.
“I am not surprised, he is a quality player,” Corica said.
“When you have success, this is going to happen. Your top players, the other clubs want them.”
And he declared the club would do all they could to keep the Serbian star.
“We want to keep Ninko, we have been negotiating with Ninko for a while now. We will do our best to keep him.
“He is a great guy, I have a great relationship with him. Our supporters love him and he has been at the club for quite a while now. It would be a shame to lose him and we will do our best.”