‘Bitter-sweet’: record scorer Maclaren to quit City

Steve Larkin |

Jamie Maclaren’s Melbourne City goal celebrations have been a familiar sight in the A-League Men.
Jamie Maclaren’s Melbourne City goal celebrations have been a familiar sight in the A-League Men.

Socceroos striker Jamie Maclaren says it will be “bitter-sweet” to leave Melbourne City after a wildly successful A-League Men stint.

The competition’s record goal-scorer is yet to announce where he will play next season.

But Maclaren on Tuesday announced his imminent departure from City, who play arch-rivals Melbourne Victory in an elimination final on Sunday.

“It’s a bitter-sweet moment for me to leave the club that I’ve called home for the past five and a half years,” he said in a statement.

“I’m incredibly proud of what I’ve been able to achieve here, both personally and as a team.

“I came here to help bring success to this club and I leave knowing that I played my role in that, where together we’ve made so many fond memories and shared so much success.”

Maclaren’s career at City has been highlighted by four Golden Boots and six trophies – including three Premierships and a Championship.

McLaren’s all-time ALM goals record stands at 154, including 115 in 163 games for City. He also captained the club.

City’s director of football Michael Petrillo described the 30-year-old as  a “legend”.

“Jamie embodies everything we stand for as a club,” Petrillo said.

“He has been an outstanding footballer for us and an exceptional role model for his teammates and young fans.

“On the pitch, his name will remain in the record books forever.

“Not only is he the league’s greatest ever goal scorer but he also made an enormous contribution to our men’s team during their most successful period.

“Jamie leaves City a legend.”

Born in Sunbury, Victoria, a 15-year-old Maclaren trialled with Blackburn Rovers in England but in 2013 was released after four years without a senior appearance.

Maclaren joined Perth Glory and had stretches at Brisbane Roar and in Germany and Scotland before joining Melbourne City as a marquee in 2019.