Reds Veterans Isaías and Javi López Commit to One Final Year

Adelaide United is pleased to announce that Isaías and Javi López have signed a one-year contract extension, which will take them both to the end of their playing careers with the Reds.

The pair will be part of the 2024/25 senior leadership group in the dressing room, while completing their coaching badges together here in Adelaide.

The duo will also be key mentors to the young cohort of players in both the A-League Men and Youth setups.

Isaías (37) will also have his sights set on becoming Adelaide United’s all-time highest capped player, currently nineteen matches behind Eugene Galekovic, who has 284 appearances.

Arguably the greatest player to represent Adelaide United, Isaías has his country’s style of football ingrained in his DNA.

Having previously gained experience playing for La Liga side Espanyol, Isaías became an essential cog in the Reds’ engine room from the moment he arrived at the club in 2013.

Isaías scored one of the most memorable goals in Red’s history, slotting home a free kick at Adelaide Oval in the 2016 Grand Final in the 3-1 win over Western Sydney Wanderers.

The Spanish maestro’s class has also seen him claim the Aurelio Vidmar Medal a record four times and win the award three straight years between 2017 and 2019.

During his second spell with the Club, Isaías notched his 250th appearance for the Reds against Sydney FC in January 2024.

Isaías told AUFC Media his reasoning behind playing for one more season.

“I couldn’t allow myself to finish my career in the way we finished last season,” he said.

“I still have energy and hunger to help the team to finish get to where we belong, which is competing for finals and fighting for silverware.

“I also feel I have leadership qualities which I want to embrace and guide the next generation coming through.”

Javi López arrived at Adelaide United with a wealth of pedigree after playing more than a decade in La Liga with RCD Espanyol.

Between 2009 and 2020, the 38-year-old amassed more than 280 games in all competitions and faced some of the best players in the world on a weekly basis.

The Spaniard has amassed 89 appearances for the Club, scoring four times.

Javi López is an incredibly popular personality in the dressing room and emits a positive vibe around the Club.

Javi told AUFC Media about how he sees his final year at the Club.  

“For me, staying at Adelaide United is a dream come true,” the Spaniard said.

“I feel part of this Club because identify with its values.

“Although I am getting on in years, I feel strong and have the ability and energy to continue contributing, while helping on and off the field to the development of young people and the Club.

“Me and my family are Reds, and I cannot wait to finish my playing career where I belong.”

Head Coach, Carl Veart, pays tribute to the pair.

“Isaías and Javi deserve a lot of credit in and around the Club and are very well respected,” said Veart.

“Their professionalism and hard work are a fantastic example to set for our younger players.

“I look forward to having them as part of our leadership group next season and hopefully we can give them a fantastic send-off.”

Adelaide United Chief Executive Officer, Nathan Kosmina, spoke highly of the pair and how instrumental it is to have them both stay a further season at the Reds.

“The Club is delighted to announce the re-signing of Isa and Javi for another season,” said Kosmina.

“We pride ourselves on providing pathways for young South Australian players, but we can only do this with leaders whose actions and behaviours set the appropriate standards and expectations within the playing group.

“Both players embody what it means to be an Adelaide United footballer, and their wealth of knowledge and experience holds huge value both on and off the field.

“Isaías and Javi are amongst the best foreign players to grace the A-Leagues and it is a privilege that the choose to end their playing careers at Adelaide United.”

The pair will return to pre-season training with the rest of the playing which gets underway July 1.