Western United linked with shock move for Nix captain

The Wellington skipper is set to jump ship and follow his former coach

Things just keep getting worse for Wellington Phoenix with captain Andrew Durante confirming he will be leaving the club with reports suggesting he's set to join Western United next season. 

According to Stuff, Durante has told the club he intends to follow Mark Rudan to Melbourne. 

The 37-year-old was widely expected to retire at season's end but never ruled out playing on nor detailed exactly where his future would lie should he decide against hanging up the boots.

After a strong season with the Nix, Rudan was finally unveiled as Western United's inaugural coach last month with former Wellington players Filip Kurto and Max Burgress already signed on with the club. 

The new A-League side reportedly want to make Durante their first club captain with the Nix in turn offering the A-League veteran a dual player-management role in an attempt to retain his services.

But after nearly 300 games for Wellington, the defender is ready to tackle a new challenge as the Nix lose another key player for next season.

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"It's with a heavy heart that I announce that I will be leaving the Wellington Phoenix after 11 years of service," Durante wrote in a message on Instagram.

"I feel my contribution to the football club has been a significant one and it is one that I'm really proud of.

"But it has come the time time for me to put myself and my family first and move out of my comfort zone. I have an oppourtunity to challenge myself in a new environment, to take on a new adventure with my wife and kids, close to our family."