Wed, 15 Jul 2020

SYDNEY, June 4 (Xinhua) -- Swedish football star Ola Toivonen will leave Melbourne Victory and return to Europe after the expiration of his contract, the club confirmed in a statement Thursday.

"With the ongoing health crisis unfolding around the world, the 33-year-old believes the time is right for him and his family to make the move," it said.

A member of Sweden's 2018 World Cup squad, Toivonen signed a two-year deal with Victory ahead of the 2018-2019 A-League season, and scored 25 goals in 40 appearances for the navy blue.

Unfortunately, those goals didn't lead to more wins, as the club notched just five wins from 21 matches, currently sitting in 10th in the league.

Still, Toivonen said he will miss playing in front of the passionate and loyal Victory crowds.

"I want to thank the members and fans who create a special atmosphere to play in front of, both at home and away games, and I have really enjoyed scoring goals and celebrating with you after our wins," Toivonen said.

"Melbourne is a fantastic city and Victory is a very professional and well-run club, while we didn't achieve the success we had all hoped for over the past two years, it was a privilege to captain the club this season."

Victory's football operations manager, Paul Trimboli, thanked Toivonen for his service and professionalism over the past two years and wished him and his family all the best.

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