Italian superstar Del Piero’s run with Sydney FC may be nearing an end after the A-League recruit told reporters this week that contract extensions with the club have stalled.
Del Piero has a player-option for a second year on his Sydney FC deal worth $2 million and he has indicated that he would like to remain with the club, but The Australian is reporting sources close to the 38-year-old is “frustrated by the lack of action by Sydney.”
Late last month an unnamed source told media outlets that Del Piero was committed to Sydney FC and was willing to sign the extension. That now appears to be on the rocks.
"We have been talking. We are waiting (for) what it (the club) decide … they wait (for) me. Everybody is waiting," Del Piero told reporters before a individual training session on Monday.
"We have discussed things. We have a good relationship, but at the moment we have to think day by day. First we (the team) have to make a good position on the (A-League) standings, then we can talk with tranquillity and calm about next season. We have time to decide the future."
Injuries have limited Del Piero in recent weeks and Sydney have also faltered to the point where they now find themselves dead last in the league standings.
Del Piero has missed multiple games due to a hamstring injury, as well as fatigue, and is currently in doubt for this weekend’s derby against Western Sydney at Allianz Stadium. This isn’t European football where player agents in the UK make more money than some Australian clubs; Sydney has the right to have legitimate concerns over the health of their marquee player.
The former Juventus star is also said to not be a huge fan of some of the A-League tackling. He was the victim of some heavy punishment a fortnight ago against Melbourne Heart and has been quoted as saying the tackling Down Under "is not good".
Del Piero’s impact on the A-League has been nothing short of positive; attendance and television numbers skyrocketed earlier in the season and the league nailed a huge broadcast deal in part because of his presence. If healthy and playing, Del Piero will do only good things for Australian domestic football.
Crave has Australian sport covered.
Follow Robert White on Twitter @RobertWhitebrrr.