Confirmed: Krishna and Wellington part ways

Johnny Warren Medal winner and Wellington Phoenix all-time leading goal scorer Roy Krishna have parted ways after five-and-a-half seasons.

The club confirmed Krishna’s exit from the club on Monday afternoon, with the Fijian striker’s current 12-month contract set to expire this Friday.

Krishna’s destination is still unconfirmed, despite reported interest from Asia and within the Hyundai A-League.

New Phoenix boss Ufuk Talay last week told reporters that he believed that if Krishna decided to stay in the Hyundai A-League, it would be with Wellington.

“After much thought and consideration and consultation with my family back in Fiji, we have decided to move on from the A-League to secure a future outside of the league," Krishna said in a statement released by the Phoenix.

"We have negotiated a contract and we are currently working out the finer details. We will be announcing the club name when we are back from our belated honeymoon towards the end of June. 

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"I would like to thank the Wellington Phoenix family for the wonderful five years I’ve been here. Thank you especially to the staff and management. It was not an easy decision as the club has been a huge part of my life. Wellington will always be home. 

"If I was going to stay in the A-League then I would have continued with the Wellington Phoenix as we have built a wonderful community together with the club and the wonderful nix supporters. 

"I wish the club all the best for the new season and I’m sure with all the plans the club has in store, it’s only going to get better."

Krishna, 31, departs Phoenix as a legend of the club. He cemented his legacy in 2018/19 with a series of blistering performances, scoring a career-high 19 goals – a tally which won him Golden Boot and Johnny Warren Medal accolades – as well as firing Wellington to a sixth-place finish, the club’s first Finals Series appearance in four years.

In December, the forward overtook Wellington icon Paul Ifill as the club’s outright leading goal scorer – the same man Krishna replaced on a short-term injury deal in January 2014.

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Krishna echoed his club form for his country and earned a special achievement award in March for his contribution to the sport in Fiji, where he is a national hero.

His departure is another major off-season blow for Phoenix, who have lost former head coach Mark Rudan, star goalkeeper Filip Kurto and emerging attacker Max Burgess - as well as releasing six other players - in the last fortnight.

It leaves Talay – who has just seven players confirmed on the roster for next season – with a sizeable rebuilding job ahead of the 2019/20 campaign.

Roy Krishna
Fan favourite: Roy Krishna