Abbas a Jet for one more

The Newcastle Jets have today re-signed Ali Abbas on a 1-year contract, keeping the livewire Iraqi international at the club for the Hyundai A-League 2010/11 season.

The Newcastle Jets have today re-signed Ali Abbas on a 1-year contract, keeping the livewire Iraqi international at the club for the Hyundai A-League 2010/11 season.

The electrifying winger originally joined the Hunter-based club in September last year as an injury replacement for luckless midfielder Shaun Ontong, and became an instant fan favourite at EnergyAustralia Stadium with his dynamic play down the left flank.

Part of the Iraqi national team that lifted the AFC Asian Cup trophy in 2007, Abbas made a name for himself later that year by seeking asylum in Australia after playing in a 2008 Beijing Olympics qualifier in Gosford for the Iraqi Under-23 side.

The 23-year-old hasn-t looked back since then, and last Hyundai A-League season made 17 appearances for the Jets, scoring a sublime goal from 25-yards in the final round of the regular season in the process.

This afternoon, Abbas explained that he has settled into life in Newcastle and is looking forward to making the Hunter his home for the foreseeable future.

“I feel great,” he said. “I-m happy because I can stay here for one more year, after that if I have another opportunity I would like to stay for a long time.”

“First time, when I came here, I didn-t know anyone here but then I spent time here with the people. I like the supporters, the management, everyone at the Newcastle Jets, I like being close to them because it-s like I have another family here,” said Abbas.

Club chief executive John Tsatsimas shared the Iraqi-s joy as he unveiled the club-s latest retention target.

“It brings me great delight to announce that Ali has agreed to extend his stay with the Newcastle Jets for another year.”

“We are ecstatic and very thankful that he has decided to stay and he has proven to be a valuable asset to the team, and he has been a starting player at the back end of the season.”

“So another piece of the jigsaw puzzle has fallen into place and we certainly look forward to what next season holds. We-re very excited about the potential that we have in the forthcoming season,” said Mr. Tsatsimas.

Newcastle Jets club memberships for the Hyundai A-League 2010/11 season are now on sale. For more information visit the Membership page.