Dogged Adelaide United midfielder Francisco ‘Pancho’ Usucar will not suit up for the Reds next season after deciding to continue his career back in his home continent.
The former Uruguay under-20 and under-17 representative has attracted interest from a club in Ecuador and has signalled his interest to the Reds of his desire to move on.
Assessing his playing stocks for season eight, Adelaide coach John Kosmina is spoilt for choice in midfield and, with Usucar desperate to see more game time, both parties came to an agreement to allow the 22-year-old to explore his options elsewhere, the club said.
“We’ve been aware of Pancho’s situation for the past six weeks and it has just been a matter of if and when,” Kosmina said.
“We have a wealth of quality midfielders and I couldn’t guarantee Pancho a spot in the starting eleven.
“Pancho approached us with a proposition that was attractive to the club so we have come to an agreement that we think will benefit both him and us. He’s been a great contributor in his time here and we wish him success in the future.”
Since arriving in Adelaide in January 2011, Usucar has made 34 appearances in all competitions for Adelaide, comprising of 29 A-League games and five in this year’s AFC Champions League.
Admitting he is sad to be leaving Adelaide, Usucar said he had to weigh up what was best for his career and when the opportunity to join Tecnico Ecuador arose, he saw it as the right way to go.
“I had a meeting with Kossie and the coaching staff and we spoke about where I sat for this season and they said if they have the full squad available that they didn’t know if I’d be in it,” Usucar said.
“I respect that because he (Kosmina) is the coach but I have to worry about my future and my career, so when an offer came from Ecuador which was good for me, I made the decision to go because I want to play at this moment.
“I want to say thanks to the supporters of Adelaide because from the very first moment I came here they showed me so much love. I remember the first game I played against Melbourne Victory which we won 4-1 and they never stopped showing their support for me so I’m very grateful for that.
“I also want to thank my teammates for the support they have given me, there are no hard feelings towards the club but right now this is the best thing for me.”
Usucar’s departure leaves the Reds with 20 players contracted for next season.
Marquee man Alessandro Del Piero will spearhead the A-League All Stars after being voted into the side to face EPL champion Manchester United next month.