Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt is attempting a soccer career, and the Lights FC want to help him make that happen.
Owner Brett Lashbrook said Friday the team has talked to Bolt’s agent and expressed interest in the 31-year-old Jamaican, though multiple clubs are competing for his services.
“I’d put the expectations low, but I’m not giving up,” Lashbrook said.
Bolt, an eight-time Olympic gold medalist, quit track last year and has already trained with Germany’s Borussia Dortmund and South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns. Both clubs are sponsored by the the athletics brand Puma, which also sponsors Bolt.
Pace Sports Management, which represents Bolt, didn’t return messages seeking comment.
Other interested clubs include Australia’s Central Coast Mariners, which have offered Bolt a six-week trial and potential contract offer if things go well. The Associated Press said that teams in Turkey and Hungary also have inquired.
As a member of the second-division United Soccer League, the Lights don’t have the resources to get into a high-stakes bidding war for Bolt, which makes a deal unlikely. But the team will try to sell him on Las Vegas being the right place to start his soccer career.
“He has many offers and many decisions to make, but I think we have a unique opportunity, a unique team in a unique league,” Lashbrook said.
The Lights haven’t shied away from adding well-known names, such as former American soccer prodigy Freddy Adu, but Bolt has a different level of fame. He has won gold medals three times in the 100- and 200-meter dashes and twice in the 4×100 meter relay. He’s the world-record holder in all three events.
“He’s the fastest man in the world,” Lashbrook said. “What team would say no?”
Bolt’s world records
100 meters: 9.58 seconds, 2009 Berlin World Championships
200 meters: 19.19 seconds, 2009 Berlin World Championships
4×100 relay: 36.84 seconds, 2012 London Olympics