The influx of Australian defenders heading to Korea’s premier football competition, the K-League, has continued with Adelaide United FC agreeing to allow Robert Cornthwaite to join the Chunnam Dragons.
The 25-year old jetted out of Adelaide this morning in the hope of progressing his career to the more lucrative and challenging K-League, although the pending two year deal is yet to be finalised and is subject to Cornthwaite successfully completing a medical.
Cornthwaite is hopeful Chunnam’s interest will see him follow in the footsteps of former Reds team mates Sasa Ognenovski and Iain Fyfe, as well as a number of other Hyundai A-League based defenders that have headed over to play with other Korean clubs.
“I’m a little bit nervous but excited at the same time because every player wants to continue their career trying to make it overseas and this is a great opportunity to do that,” Cornthwaite said.
If Cornthwaite signs a contract with the three time Korean FA champions as planned, Adelaide United will pocket an undisclosed fee from Chunnam to release him from his current contract, which was to expire in 2013.
Cornthwaite hardly had time to pack his bags after only receiving word from Chunnam late last week that they wanted to have him in their squad for the new K-League season, which has just kicked off.
“The season has just started over there, they (Chunnam) contacted me on Thursday and it was a whirlwind deal and they want to get me over there as soon as possible,” Cornthwaite said.
“It’s a bit disappointing that I haven’t been able to say good-bye to everyone here but I’ll definitely keep in touch with my friends in Adelaide.”
“My time at Adelaide United and being able to play for my home city has been really special. I would like to thank the club and the fans for the past six years and hopefully I could be back playing for the Reds again someday.”
Cornthwaite has been part of Adelaide United since the inaugural Hyundai A-League season and has accumulated 139 appearances (8 goals) for the Reds in all competitions, the total comprising of 104 Hyundai A-League games.
Founded in 1995, Chunnam Dragons are based in the Korean city of Gwangyang and were K-League runners-up in 1997. They are currently coached by Jung Hae-Seong.