Nikita departs for Dutch Glory

Perth Glory has accepted an offer for young West Australian striker Nikita Rukavytsya to complete a transfer to Dutch first division side FC Twente.

Perth Glory has accepted an offer for young West Australian striker Nikita Rukavytsya to complete a transfer to Dutch first division side FC Twente.

Rukavytsya captured the attention of football scouts around the world with his exhilarating pace and deadly shot in two seasons of Hyundai A-League action for Perth and national team representation with the Olyroos U23 side, including the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

The 21 year old impressed during a trial with FC Twente in the Netherlands earlier this month before returning to play in Perth-s final match against Queensland where he scored his 10th goal of the season, moving him to a tie with team mate Eugene Dadi as the club-s leading scorer.

Glory officials received an offer from FC Twente on Saturday and following a review of the offer, and further negotiations, agreed on a transfer for Rukavytsya on Monday.

Rukavytsya, Glory-s U23 marquee player, was contracted to Perth until the end of the 2009/10 season and the club has received a transfer fee (undisclosed) for relinquishing his services.

“The negotiations were conducted in good spirits and both Perth Glory and FC Twente have come out as winners in this deal,” said Perth Glory CEO Scott Gooch.

“Nikita is an exceptionally talented young player and expressed a strong desire to play in Holland and we have worked diligently to help facilitate that opportunity for him.

“While we-re sorry to see such an outstanding talent leave our club we can be proud of the role Perth Glory has played in his development and wish Nikita all the best as he fulfils his dream of playing in Europe,” Mr Gooch said.

The young striker has departed Perth for Holland where he will join his new team mates as they continue their season in the Eredivisie where they are currently third, just a point behind second placed Dutch giants AFC Ajax.

Mr Gooch indicated that the transfer fee received by Perth Glory will be channelled back into the playing squad budget for next season and that the recruitment of a marquee player is part of the club-s recruiting strategy.

“The owners are committed to ensuring we continue to bolster our playing squad to challenge for the Championship and if a suitable player with the credentials to enhance Perth Glory-s prospects on and off the pitch becomes available then we-ll certainly look to bring that person to the club,” said Mr Gooch.

Rukavytsya joined the Glory as a replacement player during the final stages of the 2006/07 season after returning to Perth from the Australian Institute of Sport. He secured his first full time contract the following season and scored six goals in a preview to his burgeoning talent. International appearances followed, including a key role up front in Australia-s Olympic football campaign, while his star continued to rise in the Hyundai A-League this season and he leaves Perth Glory with a total of 42 games and 16 goals.

“Nikita is a fantastic kid and has a huge career ahead of him,” said Perth Glory Coach Dave Mitchell.

“He works hard and has the talent and desire to make it in Europe.

“The Dutch league will suit him very well and I look forward to seeing his progress and hope he is given the opportunity to play and show what he is capable of producing on the football pitch,” Mitchell said.