Sydney FC chief Tony Pignata has urged fans to not use Alessandro Del Piero as a source of entertainment.
Recently, Central Coast Mariners fans were left disgruntled when Del Piero failed to get on the pitch but Pignata feels they don’t really have the right to complain as missing matches through injury is part and parcel of football.
“There’s no doubt people all over Australia want to watch him play,” Pignata told footballaustralia.com.au.
“You saw when we played in Brisbane last weekend when instead of the usual 12,000 they got 23,000, so he does put bums on seats.
“But unfortunately, for example the game against Central Coast, I know a lot of tickets were sold on the back of him attending but he didn’t pass the fitness test the morning of the game so we had to pull him out.
“It’s not about rolling him out willy-nilly, it’s about making sure he’s fit and can play. And if he can, that’s fantastic. There’s no responsibility on our part to make sure he plays in any game, whether it’s home or away – he’ll play when he’s fit.”
He added: “First and foremost he was signed as a player for Sydney FC.
“Yes, he’s been fantastic for the league, we’ve had record crowds, record TV audiences – but he’s here to play football for Sydney FC.”