Adelaide United striker Sergio van Dijk is keen to leave the club to find first-team football, and hopes to clinch a move during January's transfer window
|By CHRISTIAN MAMMONE
Exiled Adelaide United striker Sergio van Dijk is hoping a transfer out of the A-League club can be organised before the month is out.
Van Dijk found himself on the outer at Hindmarsh Stadium since openly admitting last year his want to be closer to his family in the Netherlands after they failed to adjust to life in Adelaide.
The Dutchman has featured just three times for the Reds domestically this season, and has consequently developed a frosty relationship with coach John Kosmina.
With fellow striker Bruce Djite set to spend time on the sidelines after injuring his groin in the 3-2 win over Perth last Friday, van Dijk is in line to make his first appearance since the 2-1 loss to league leaders Central Coast in December.
But while van Dijk is pleased to be back in the frame after an extended stint with the Reds' National Youth League team, the 2010-11 A-League Golden Boot winner remains focused on sorting out his future - even if it meant leaving the club.
"I want to play as soon as possible, so if I can find something and it's a good deal for everyone, I hope to go," said van Dijk, who spoke to the media on Tuesday.
"The transfer could happen really quickly... it could happen, of course, but I'm not the main party in this story, that's the club.
"The club is my boss and they decide what's going to happen.
"I understand that people will say 'try and keep him here' [in Adelaide], but I want to play as well.
"I'm third [striker] in the pecking order and my chances are really small, so I think it's time to move on.
"If I can leave, I'm happy to leave and start a new chapter.
"The Adelaide chapter is closed. It's sad, but I know in a way that's football and it can be a hard world."
Although Indonesia - with Persib Bandung linked heavily in the past - remains the more plausible destination for van Dijk, having not received any offers from clubs in Europe near his Holland-based family, some A-League teams may remain optimistic of luring the 30-year-old on a short-term deal.
Expansion side Western Sydney Wanderers, who are pushing for a debut finals, and reigning minor premiers Central Coast - likely to lose promising midfielder Tom Rogic and possibly forward Bernie Ibini and goalkeeper Mat Ryan - could be potential suitors.
However, van Dijk scoffed at any suggestion of remaining in Australia.
"The A-League, I don't know, that's not really my intention to go to another club in Australia," he said.
"The main thing is my family reasons to leave Australia and that wouldn't be an improvement
"The economical situation isn't as good as in Asia, so Indonesia would be the most logical step for me.
"It's a lot closer to Europe and my family's home country, but in Europe there are not as many opportunities and clubs that would like to sign me, so I have to make the best of both situations and chose."
Questioned as to whether he was bitter or had any ill feelings towards United, van Dijk rejected such a notion.
"I'm not angry. I am frustrated and a bit disappointed in how things have been working out, but the next step is my new future and a new chapter, and I hope I can turn this around," he said.
Adelaide takes on Melbourne Heart at AAMI Park on Friday night.