Juninho future remains in limbo - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Juninho future remains in limbo

By Guy Hand 11/02/2008 07:13:58 PM Comments (0)

Sydney FC are weighing up both the future of high-priced Brazilian Juninho and the whole marquee player concept for next season after exiting the A-League finals series.

Juninho, who has had an injury-plagued season as the club's marquee player, is now out of contract and with his 35th birthday two weeks away appears at long odds to remain at Sydney.

Sydney FC chief executive George Perry said further discussions would be held with Juninho about his future in the wake of the club's 2-0 loss to Queensland Roar on Friday night which knocked them out of the finals.

Juninho did not play in the match - succumbing again to one of a series of injuries which has limited him to just 15 appearances this season.

But as Sydney FC gear up for a membership drive they hope will gain them 10,000 ticketed supporters for next season, the club's board is considering whether to enlist a big name on big money or move towards a more egalitarian squad approach.

Much is likely to depend on coach John Kosmina, whom the club are keen to give the squad of his choosing rather than the one he inherited when he arrived midway through the season.

"We need to make a decision. The club's philosophy has been for Sydney to gain some real space in the marketplace, we need a point of differentiation. A marquee player is a point of differentiation," Perry told AAP.

"The coverage (Juninho) got when he arrived was fantastic and he really brings people along as well.

"We'll have further discussions with him. We're looking at our roster at the moment before we look abroad.

"We've got an opportunity to give John Kosmina the squad he wants."

Despite his problems, Juninho has starred whenever he has played and the marquee/guest player philosophy has served Sydney FC well.

Inaugural marquee player Dwight Yorke, plus Japanese star Kazuyoshi Miura and Italian Benito Carbone - who had guest stints - were all successful.

Sydney FC expect to start selling 2008-09 memberships some time next month and hope the inaugural Pan-Pacific Championship from February 20-23 in Hawaii can boost their cause.

They play American side Houston Dynamo first-up, with the winner to play either David Beckham's Los Angeles Galaxy or Japanese champions Gamba Osaka in the final.

Sydney FC are hoping to have new signing Simon Colosimo available for the tournament.

Perry said negotiations were under way to have the former Perth Glory skipper cleared and on deck when the team leaves for Honolulu on Sunday.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2023 AAP

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