Just hours after Toivonen confirmed he was having thoughts of making a return to his native Sweden when his contract concluded at the end of the 2019/20 season, a report from The Age revealed that the 33-year-old had emerged as a key target of the A-League’s soon to be 12th side.

Set to enter the league in 2020/21, Macarthur have been able to approach off-contract A-League players about becoming part of the Bulls inaugural squad since December 1.

Though losing an off-contract superstar to an A-League rival wouldn’t be unprecedented in Victory history, the loss of their captain after he previously hinted he wanted to return home to Europe would be a significant blow to the team’s prestige.

Melbourne Victory declined to comment when approached by FTBL for comment.

Arriving in Melbourne ahead of the 2018/19 season after departing French side Toulouse, Toivonen scored 15 goals in 22 league appearances in his first season with the four-time A-League champions and already has five to his name in 2019/20.

His 0.667 goals per game ratio are fifth all-time among players with a minimum of 10 A-League appearances.

Previous reports have already stated that expansion club Macarthur has approached Sydney FC superstar Miloš Ninković about making the jump across from Sydney FC next season – which the Harboursiders allegedly believe took place prior to December’s opening day.  

Having already secured current Matildas Head Coach Ante Miličić as their first Head Coach, Macarthur has already indicated an interest in pursuing Socceroos legend Mile Jedinak as an inaugural marquee.