Croatian legend Srna on the brink of joining PAOK

Croatian legend Srna on the brink of joining PAOK

Legendary Shakhtar Donetsk captain Darijo Srna is on the brink of joining PAOK, with the Greeks finalising contract negotiations with the seasoned Croatian international.

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The 36-year old right-back spent 15 hugely successful years with Shakhtar Donetsk, but with his contract expiring, Srna decided to leave the Eastern European outfit and look for options to continue his playing career elsewhere. In an interview with the Ukrainian press, the Croat revealed that he’s on the move and is eager to keep on playing: “I don’t know what functions I would have had within the club (Shakhtar), but I belong to football. The fans want me to stay here, but I’m eager to continue playing on the pitch. I’m sure that I will play with another club, my decision is to keep playing. I have a lot of options.”

At this moment in time, Srna’s most likely destination appears to be PAOK. The Dikefalos tou Vorra, who can offer the defender UEFA Champions League football, have shown real interest in Srna and are on the brink of getting a one-year contract with an extension option over the line. According to reports in Greece, Srna allegedly arrived in Thessaloniki on Wednesday in order to finalise the transfer and go through his medical tests. Srna will receive around 500,000 euros per calendar year with the Greek Cup winners.

In his impressive career, Srna has only played for Hajduk Split and Shakhtar Donetsk, winning the Ukrainian Premier League on 10 occasions with the latter alongside eight Ukrainian Cups and the 2009 UEFA Cup. Srna boasts 26 goals in 134 Croatian national team appearances.

Swedish defensive midfielder Pontus Wernbloom is edging closer to a possible transfer from Russia’s CSKA Moscow, while Genk striker Nikolaos Karelis is also on PAOK’s watch-list. Taking into account the task of making the Champions League group stage and winning the Super League, PAOK require additions to their strike force.

by Shaun Nicolaides
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