The Central Coast Mariners' offer to Usain Bolt is "much, much less" than the Olympic great originally wanted, according to A-League chief Greg O'Rourke.
O'Rourke confirmed the Mariners had offered Bolt, 32, a deal after the sprinting superstar went through a trial with the club.
But Bolt will need to accept a smaller offer than he expected to fulfil his footballing dream, with Football Federation Australia (FFA) not funding any part of the deal.
"There's nothing on the table in writing from FFA or funding from the marquee fund as we've said from day one," O'Rourke told SEN on Monday.
"The marquee fund has secured players like [Melbourne Victory attacker] Keisuke Honda and [W-League star] Sam Kerr, people with football pedigree. Bolt has yet to become a professional footballer anywhere in the world.
"Having said that, I understand from Central Coast Mariners that they have tabled an offer to Bolt's management, which he is currently considering.
"That offer is much, much less than what they were originally requesting. If Usain wants to join that club and become a professional footballer, he should follow a journey pretty similar to other trialists, not withstanding for a minute the amount of marketing that somebody like Bolt – the fastest man in the world – can bring to Central Coast and to the broader A-League."
O'Rourke said he felt fans would prefer the governing body in Australia to use its money in other areas.
"There were some marketing conversations about contributions towards attendances, appearances fees if you like," he said.
"In terms of funding him as a footballer, FFA has been consistent that they won't fund him as a footballer.
"It won't change. Football purists would say if you have some money to invest, we don't think you should put it into a trialist like Usain."
The Mariners opened their A-League season with a 1-1 draw against Brisbane Roar on Sunday.
|NBA Draft 2019: Three players with boom or bust potential|
|Colombia 1 Qatar 0: Zapata heads in late winner|
|NBA Draft 2019: Five second-round sleepers|
|NBA Draft 2019: Three players who will be selected too early|
|NBA Draft 2019: Six things we learned from Zion Williamson´s interview|
|NBA Draft 2019: What will Warriors do with pick 28?|
|Injured Del Potro withdraws at Queen´s, Lopez into last eight|
|We´ll wait and see - Jorginho agent not ruling out Juventus move|
|Women´s World Cup Review: Argentina and VAR dump Scotland out as England top Group D|
|Lopez strongly denies match-fixing allegations|
|Defending champion Coric comes through Halle thriller|
|Australia v Bangladesh: Carey and co target dangerman Shakib|
|Euro U21s Review: Fornals stunner gets Spain off the mark, Poland shock Italy|
|Argentina make Women´s World Cup history with stunning Scotland comeback|
|Sevastova cruises past Tomljanovic at Mallorca Open|
|Celtic could face Nomme Kalju or Shkendija in Champions League qualifying|
|New Zealand skipper Williamson hails De Grandhomme innings|
|Inter complete Politano deal|
|Coutinho unsure over Barcelona future|
|Luis Enrique grateful for privacy after leaving Spain role|
|Bayern looking forward to signing Sane, claims Lewandowski|
|Every win will be yours – Spain captain Ramos pays tribute to Luis Enrique|
|Masterful Williamson nudges South Africa closer to World Cup exit|
|Unfortunate Del Potro suffers another knee injury|
|F1 Raceweek: Vettel under pressure - French GP in numbers|
|Police arrest man on suspicion of manslaughter over Sala death|
|Baines signs Everton extension|
|AC Milan appoint Giampaolo as head coach|
|Is Mats Hummels still an elite defender?|
|Barcelona to face Napoli in first LaLiga Serie A Cup|
|Pant cleared to join India squad at World Cup after Dhawan blow|
|Ancelotti wants James Rodriguez, confirms Napoli chief De Laurentiis|
|Uruguay v Japan: Laxalt expects tough clash in Porto Alegre|
|Hummels set to join Gotze in returning to Dortmund|
|Who is new Spain coach Robert Moreno?|
|Bamba out with ankle injury after Choudhury challenge|
|Juan Mata agrees two-year extension at Manchester United|
|Assistant coach Terry extends Aston Villa contract|
|Nowell expected to be fit for World Cup following ankle surgery|
|Walker joins Silva, Sterling, Ederson and more in committing to City|
|AFC Champions League Review: Hwang strike gives Ulsan advantage|
|Saracens to face Munster, Racing and Ospreys in tough Champions Cup pool|
|Super League clubs alarmed by England and Great Britain coach Bennett´s NRL claim|
|Mendy opens up on ´incredible´ journey from career-ending operation to Real Madrid|
|Moreno replaces Luis Enrique as Spain coach|
|Walker pens two-year Manchester City extension to 2024|
|Dortmund agree deal for Hummels return|
|Amla reaches ODI landmark at World Cup|
|Neymar Champions League ban appeal rejected|
|India lose batsman Dhawan for rest of World Cup campaign|
|Scholes fined £8,000 by FA over betting breaches|
|Simmons promises answers on Afghan amid apparent row with selector|
|´Out of control´ Lorenzo told to calm down after crash|
|Marquinhos urges ´team-mate and friend´ Neymar to remain at PSG|
|I´m not looking to fill LeBron´s shoes - Williamson wants to ´be the best Zion´|
|Paraguay´s Messi challenge outlined by Berizzo|
|All Blacks ace Ben Smith back and ´100 per cent´ fit|
|Warriors great Vatuvei diagnosed with brain cyst|
|Brazil can cope without Neymar - Tite defends Selecao stars|
|Tigers tie Thompson to new two-year contract|
|Thomas needs ´big training rides´ to make up for crash|
|Maradona had better Argentina team-mates than Messi, says Capello|
|2019 Africa Cup of Nations: Fit and firing Salah carries hopes of hosts Egypt|
|Rumour Has It: Neymar looks for house in Barcelona, PSG want Casemiro in possible Madrid deal|
|Scaloni: Argentina´s Copa America campaign hasn´t started yet|
|Arenado powers Rockies to win over Diamondbacks|
|Tite has no VAR complaints as Brazil booed again|
|Nats ace Scherzer breaks nose in batting practice|
|Stroman doubts long-term future is with Blue Jays|
|United States 4 Guyana 0: Defending champions cruise in Gold Cup opener|