Two-year contract for Bolt



CENTRAL Coast insists it is business as usual for Usain Bolt, who is mulling whether to take up an offer in Malta or continue chasing an A-League contract.

Reigning Maltese champions Valletta FC, boasting cash to splash after investors from the UAE recently took charge of the club and vowed to fund a charge towards the Champions League, have reportedly offered Bolt a two-year contract.

Bolt, who has been training in Gosford for almost two months as part of a timeless trial, is attempting to make the transformation from eight-time Olympic gold medallist to professional footballer.

The Mariners have insisted at every stage it is a long-term project. January had been floated as the probable deadline for a final decision as Bolt tries to rise to A-League standard.

But interest from overseas after Bolt’s brace in a trial game, and the prospect of a lucrative no-strings-attached deal, has made those discussions more complex.

“Usain Bolt will continue his indefinite training period with the Central Coast Mariners until any further notice,” Mariners chief executive Shaun Mielekamp said in a statement yesterday.

“The club will be making no comment on media speculation regarding the future of Usain Bolt. Full focus for the Mariners remains on our round-one away trip to face the Brisbane Roar.”

Valletta managing director and CEO Ghasston Slimen told ESPN they hoped to have Bolt on board in time for a Maltese Super Cup match on December 13. “A champion is always welcome and at Valletta FC we believe nothing is impossible,” Slimen said.

Football Federation Australia chief David Gallop admitted that “the story on the contract in Europe is news to me.”

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