A storm has reportedly erupted over the future of Australian soccer league star Garang Kuol on the same day he was selected to make his Socceroos debut.
Kuol was named to Socceroos coach Graham Arnold’s roster on Wednesday for the team’s final two friendlies against New Zealand before the Qatar World Cup.
It was the ideal 18th birthday present for the Central Coast Mariners prospect, who described his selection as “one of the sickest things ever.”
His day appeared to become even better on Wednesday night, when it was revealed that numerous European clubs are interested in recruiting him — and that Kuol has agreed in principle to a mammoth four-year deal with Premier League giant Newcastle United.
According to beIN, Kuol is willing to accept a weekly salary of $43,000, for a total of $9 million over the life of the contract.
Despite never having started a senior professional game, Kuol’s career is growing right now. He made his Mariners debut in December and has only appeared as a substitute since then.
However, he was exceptional in the A-League All Stars exhibition against Spanish club Barcelona in May, where Barcelona boss Xavi admitted he was pleased with Kuol’s performance.
Following that performance, Kuol got his first professional football contract with the Mariners, a two-year deal. According to BeIn, the Mariners would get a “small” transfer fee from Newcastle in exchange for letting Kuol depart.
His contractual status, though, appears to be in jeopardy, with reports that a behind-the-scenes quarrel may become a legal concern.
Kuol Kuol, the Central Coast star’s brother, has responded to the beIn report on Twitter, writing that he is “very dissatisfied” with the piece.
According to the allegation, Kuol has been in contact with high-profile player agent Kwaku Mensah.
John Grimaud, the 18-year-old’s manager, is already on board.
If the Newcastle move goes through, Kuol will allegedly stay with the Mariners until January before joining Newcastle, where he will be promptly loaned out to another European team.
Kuol was one of seven debutants named to the Socceroos team on Wednesday morning.
Cameron Devlin, Jason Cummings, Ryan Strain, Harrison Delbridge, Tyrese Francois and Keanu Baccus have also been selected to make a potential Socceroos debut.
The series against New Zealand begins at Suncorp Stadium on September 22. The Return leg is at Eden Park on September 25.