Sydney FC defenders Jordy Buijs and Luke Wilkshire have departed the Sky Blues, the club confirmed today.
Buijs will return to the Netherlands after a fantastic one and a half seasons with the club, while Wilkshire likewise leaves to pursue other football opportunities following a stellar 2017/18 season in Sky Blue.
“It has been a wonderful experience for me and my family over the last 16 months to be a part of the greatest team in Hyundai A-League history,” said Rotterdam born stopper Buijs.
“I have won four trophies, made some fabulous memories and friends and I am very proud to have been on this journey with the club but now it is time to seek out another challenge.
“I would like to thank the club, particularly Han Berger, for giving me the opportunity to play for Sydney FC. The experience has brought us closer.
“It was a pleasure to follow our captain Alex Brosque, for whom I have the utmost respect, and also to play alongside great players in this squad, including my friends Adrian Mierzejewski, Milos Ninkovic and Luke Wilkshire.
“Thank you to Head Coach Graham Arnold for leading us to four trophies and for the tactical knowledge he has given me. He is someone I respect for his man-management skills and when he speaks I always listen.
“The Sydney FC medical and support staff have been brilliant, they have kept me strong and healthy, especially Elias and Ibrahim, while Alex our Equipment Manager is the heart of the club and has done everything for me and my team-mates.
“Finally, I would like to thank the wonderful Members at Sydney FC, especially The Cove, who have supported me and my family since my debut on Australia Day last year.
“They have been fantastic throughout my time here, I feel I am part of their family for life.”
36 year old Wilkshire similarly thanked the club for the season he enjoyed, where a FFA Cup winners medal and Premiership medal were bestowed upon him.
“I just wanted say a big thankyou to Arnie, the boys and all the staff at Sydney FC,” Wilkshire said.
“It’s been an amazing season and it was an amazing opportunity offered to me by the club to come back and play in Australia which I thoroughly enjoyed.
“I’d like to wish the squad and everyone all the best in the future and rest assured I’ll be watching on.”
Sydney FC General Manager of Football Operations Terry McFlynn wished the duo well in their future careers.
“Jordy has been a fantastic addition to Sydney FC and I would like to wish him and his family the best for what lies ahead,” he said.
“He has performed admirably for the club but in football people move on in their career and we respect Jordy’s wish for a fresh challenge overseas.
“I would like to thank Luke for his wonderful contribution to the success of our football club,” he continued.
“Luke provided great leadership and guidance both on and off the park to our playing group.
“Both players will be forever a part of our Sydney FC family and will always be remembered for their contribution to the most successful period in our history.”
Buijs made 40 Hyundai A-League appearances for the Sky Blues scoring one goal and winning the Championship, two Premierships and the FFA Cup. He also played five FFA Cup matches scoring two goals.
Wilkshire made 25 Hyundai A-League appearances for the Sky Blues, scoring a memorable winner over Melbourne City in Round 5. He made three FFA Cup appearances while also turning out five times in the AFC Champions League, scoring our first goal of our 2018 campaign away against Shanghai Shenhua.
Sydney FC are still in discussions with the remaining off contract players and expect to make further announcements regarding their future shortly.