Bertos, Huysegems get released by the Phoenix

SAM WORTHINGTON
Last updated 13:52 13/04/2014

Relevant offers

Football

Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey on target as Wales crush Israel in European qualifying Josh Risdon's thunderbolt lifts Perth Glory to 3-2 win over Western Sydney Wanderers Jonatan Germano goal gives Melbourne City tense 1-0 win over Brisbane Roar Tough battle looms for All Whites rookies against South Korea in Seoul Crunch time for Waitakere Utd in ASB Premiership semifinals Hawke's Bay baying for a brace of goals against Team Wellington Football Ferns' coach's balancing act for World Cup warm-up with US Kane scores on debut as England brush aside Lithuania in Euro qualifier No tactical change after Marchisio injury - Conte Gui Finkler brace keeps Melbourne Victory in second place on A-League ladder

Phoenix coach Ernie Merrick has wasted no time in reshaping his underperforming squad for next season, with off-contract duo Leo Bertos and Stein Huysegems both leaving the club.

Bertos, 32, made 127 appearances for his hometown Phoenix since signing in 2008 but has struggled with injury and form of late.

"Leo is a Wellington, Phoenix and New Zealand footballing legend," Merrick said.

"His injuries prevented him playing his best football while I've been here, but I know what he is capable of from when he has played against my team in the A-League both for Wellington and Perth. I'm sure he will remain part of the All Whites set-up and whatever eventuates in the next couple of years it would be great to see him back at the Phoenix in some capacity."

Huysegems, 31, was the Phoenix's leading goalscorer this season with 10.

The Phoenix wanted to retain the former Belgium international but were only willing to offer him a one-year extension.

Huysegems wanted two more years and has attracted interest from other A-League clubs.

Merrick described Huysegems as "probably the most professional footballer I have worked with.''

"It is sad to see him go but that is the nature of football. I know Stein will be a very competitive player wherever he ends up and if we have to face him I expect him to give us a tough time. He has been a pleasure to work with and I'm sure he will continue to score goals wherever he goes, just hopefully not against us."

The Phoenix finished ninth of 10 teams after losing 4-1 to Melbourne Victory in Wellington last night.

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers
Opinion poll

Will Burnley retain their EPL status?

Yes, they've found a winning formula

Maybe, but there’s a long way to go

No. They lack quality in certain areas

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content