Adelaide United midfielder Ken Ilsø has been provisionally suspended by Football Federation under its anti-doping policy.
FFA confirmed the player returned a positive A-sample for benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine, in January this year and is now under investigation by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority.
The Danish player, who signed for Adelaide at the beginning of the season, said he is working closely with Professional Footballers Australia, the players’ union, as he awaits the results of a B test.
“Until these results are received I cannot make any further comments,” he said in a statement issued through the PFA. “I would like to thank the PFA for their support in this testing and frustrating situation.
“To our fans, please ensure the focus is on the team. It is a critical time in our season and they need you most of all.”
FFA said Ilsø’s provisional suspension was mandatory under its anti-doping policy.
“While it is in place [he] is prohibited from participating in the A-League,” FFA said in a statement. “[He] now has the opportunity to have his B-sample analysed before FFA takes steps to issue him with an anti-doping rule violation notice.”
Adelaide United chief executive Nathan Kosmina said the club would offer Ilsø support while Asada handled the case.
“Adelaide United recognises the significance of the matter and wants to ensure our members, fans and stakeholders that we will treat this with the utmost seriousness and sensitivity,” Kosmina said in a statement.
PFA chief executive John Didulica said the players’ body would provide Ilsø with “with all necessary legal and wellbeing support”.
On-field, Ilsø has largely failed to make an imprint in 19 A-League games.
The attacking midfielder has scored three goals for the Reds, including two in one game against Wellington last November, and has come off the bench in almost half of his appearances.
Born in Solrod Strand, Ilsø was a Danish underage international who played in his native country until moving to Germany in 2011.
Ilsø has since spent time in China, Singapore and Malasyia before signing with Adelaide.