A-Leagues history made as 19-year-old signs groundbreaking contract with Adelaide

Adelaide United product Panagiotis Kikianis has signed a landmark contract extension with the Isuzu UTE A-League club.

Kikianis has signed a new five-year deal – the first of its kind in the competition – after the talented 19-year-old defender debuted against champions Central Coast Mariners in Round 15 last season.

He ended 2023-24 with five appearances and a goal – a last-gasp strike against Perth Glory in February.

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“Making my debut last season was a dream come true,” said Kikianis.

“This club holds a special place in my heart, and I am incredibly honoured and privileged to continue my journey with Adelaide United.

“Committing my future to the club was an easy decision for me to make, as this is home for me.

“The coaching staff and playing group have really pushed me to make me the best player I can be and the support from the fans has been incredible.”

Initially a scholarship signing at the start of 2023-24, Kikianis has worked his way through the ranks at hometown club Adelaide.

He started playing for Fulham United’s Under-7 side before progressing on to the likes of West Adelaide and Football SA NTC, eventually landing at the Reds.

Adelaide head coach Carl Veart added: “He’s an exceptional talent with immense potential, and he’s already shown what he’s capable of on the field.

“Pana’s commitment to the club is a testament to his dedication and ambition, and we’re excited to continue nurturing his development and watching him flourish in the coming years.

“His dedication, talent, and positive attitude make him an integral part of our squad at such a young age.”

Kikianis’ new deal comes on the back of Ethan Cox (2027), Isaías (2024), Javi López (2024) and Austin Ayoubi (2026) re-signing at Coopers Stadium.

Adelaide have also signed Archie Goodwin (Newcastle Jets), Dylan Pierias (Western Sydney Wanderers) and Sparta Rotterdam captain Bart Vriends.

“It’s extremely rewarding for Pana to communicate long-term with the Club,” said Adelaide’s head of football Marius Zanin.

“Pana has made significant sacrifices to get this opportunity and we are excited about what the future holds for him.

“This also shows the club’s commitment into the younger players and is a real credit to the work being done in the Youth Team, and through the Football SA NTC program.”