Defender Ardian Cuculi is no longer a member of Partizani after he declined to exercise his player option.
Ardian Cuculi moved to Partizani last summer when he signed a 1 year contract which also included a player option for an additional season. Well, Cuculi has already made the decision to decline that player option, becoming a free agent.
Cuculi was brought to Partizani by Shpëtim Duro, the manager who briefly coached him at Shkendija. After the 2013-14 season, Duro left Shkendija to take over as the head coach of Partizani. He led the team to a third place finish in this 2014-15 campaign, but surprisingly opted to resign from his post. That is despite Partizani qualifying for the Europa League qualifications.
So, with Duro not returning as coach, Cuculi informed the Partizani owner that he will not be exercising his player option. Cuculi, soon to be 28 years old, will look to join a middle tier league in Europe. If he is unsuccessful in those efforts, then he is very likely to transfer back to Shkendija. He has a good relationship with Shkendija’s sporting director Nebi Mustafi. Furthermore, Shkendija also clinched a spot in the Europa League qualifications.
Sulejman Starova, the new coach of Partizani, announced at his introductory press conference on Friday that Cuculi will be leaving the team for “personal reasons.”
Cuculi was a regular for Partizani this season, playing in both left-back (mostly there) and central defense (some appearances at that position). Also, he was one of the most capped national team players under the watch of former manager Boshko Gjurovski.
Ardian, however, struggled and proved he was not a national team caliber player. He is rugged and lacks the quickness and movement to play left-back. It was not much better in central defense (when fielded there), so he has not been called up by Macedonia since October of 2014.