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Culina is not Gold Coast-bound, says dad

Jason Culina's father, former Sydney FC coach Branko Culina, has denied claims from Gold Coast United that the Socceroos midfielder will join the A-League newcomers from Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven.

Gold Coast coach Miron Bleiberg said this week Culina was set to become the club's marquee player for next season, but Branko Culina said his son was now considering offers to stay in Europe.

"There has been discussions with a number of clubs including Gold Coast but PSV have now offered him a new three-year contract and Dinamo Zagreb in Croatia have also expressed an interest in signing him," said Culina.

"He's 28 and at the prime of his career and this contract is probably his most important so he is taking his time and considering his options.

"In some ways he would be silly to come back from playing Champions League football, but if he does decide to come and play in the A-League then he needs to do it now when he is at his prime.

"Great Australian players such as Paul Okon and possibly John Aloisi have returned and have been past their best and in some ways it has hurt their reputations in the eyes of the Australian public.

"It is terrible to see what John Aloisi has been going through recently, he should be remembered as a great player who scored the most important goal in Australian football history, not struggling in the A-League.

"I would hate for Jason to go through that. He needs to be a pioneer and be the first Socceroo to come back at his prime to play in the A-League or not do it at all.

"From a family point of view it would be great to have him and the grandchildren back home but, from a football perspective, playing at the highest level, especially with the World Cup coming up, would be better for him."


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