Usain Bolt has a first touch ‘like a trampoline’ and will never make it as a footballer, says Andy Keogh

The Olympic gold medalist is hoping to be offered a lucrative permanent contract after a trial with Central Coast Mariners

Ex-Olympic sprinter turned footballer Usain Bolt, scores his first goal for the Central Coast Mariners

Usain Bolt is never going to realise his dream of making it as a professional footballer in part because he has a first touch “like a trampoline”, according to Perth Glory striker and former Republic of Ireland international Andy Keogh.

The sprint legend has been offered a professional contract by A-League club Central Coast Mariners after a two-month trial, but the deal – worth around £120,000, according to reports in Australia – falls well short of the £2.3 million Bolt and his representatives are said to be requesting.

Bolt’s presence in Australia has brought a lot of welcome attention to the start of the new A-League season, but Keogh sees little footballing merit in any permanent arrangement with the Jamaican.

“It’s nice to have the attention on the A-League but him playing in the A-League, that’s not for me,” Keogh told Irish radio show ‘Off the Ball’. “For me, he’s not going to be able to make it [as a footballer].

“He’s shown a bit [of potential] but it’s a little bit of a kick in the teeth to the professionals that are in the league. From what I’ve seen, [his first touch] is like a trampoline, so I’m not too sure.”

Bolt has been offered a permanent contract by the Mariners' 

Mariners’ interest in signing Bolt appears to be primarily driven by their British entrepreneur owner Mike Charlesworth, and coach Mike Mulvey said he was unaware that a contract had been offered to the Olympic gold medallist after their A-League opener against Brisbane Roar on Sunday.

“If there’s someone who genuinely thinks he’d be a good football addition, I don’t think they should be in a position to make those calls,” Keogh added.

“It’s fine from a marketing point of view but from a football perspective, it’s a little bit farcical.”

Keogh also accused Bolt of inconsistency by holding out for a lucrative contract offer after insisting that his dream was simply to make it as a professional footballer.

“He says he’s chasing a dream of becoming a professional footballer yet he’s come out with quotes about he wants X amount [of money] when, if you’re chasing the dream, it’s not about the money,” Keogh said. “He’s obviously contradicted himself massively there.”

Bolt rejected a two-year contract from Maltese club Valletta earlier this month, with his agent Ricky Simms telling ESPN: “There is a lot of interest in Usain playing football. We regularly receive similar approaches. I can confirm Usain does not wish to pursue this opportunity in Malta.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in