20-year-old attacking utility Mitch Cooper has committed the next two years of his playing career to the Newcastle Jets after finalising a fresh contract with the Club today.Cooper -- who joined the Jets in 2012 from Gold Coast United -- has had a couple of injury setbacks in his career to date, though this campaign has shown strong signs of fulfilling his undoubted potential with the Hunter Stadium based side.
The Australian youth international said that despite receiving interest from rival Hyundai A-League outfits he is delighted to have extended his stay with the Jets -- a Club he wants to help achieve success.
“I have been here for a while and I have been through a lot of ups and downs,” Cooper explained. “So the biggest thing for me now is that I want to give back to Newcastle.”
“Newcastle is such a good place to live, the support we have is second to none, and while a lot of people have been writing off the Jets I think that’s the wrong way to look at it.”
“There’s so much improvement and potential here, and I want to be a big part of it,” he said.
Cooper added that he feels faith in the Club and coaching staff, and has been buoyed by the belief that’s been instilled in him from Phil Stubbins and co.
“The Club and coaches have backed me,” Cooper said. “Not only playing but starting regularly recently has done heaps for me and my confidence.”
“I have grown so much as a person and I am happy with how supportive everyone has been of me,” Cooper concluded.
Jets boss Stubbins said that Cooper deserved his contract extension having not only shown “promise in his play”, but maturity throughout his respective injury setbacks, and an outstanding Club centered approach on and off the pitch.
“Even when Mitch first burst onto the scene a few years ago he showed promise in his play,” Stubbins said. “Obviously he has had setbacks with injuries, but the Club is confident that he’s past the worst of that.”
“Certainly our medical staff together with Mitch have ticked every box in regards to his rehab, and that’s been vindicated in the performances we’ve seen from him of late.”
“He’s [Cooper] starting to mature as a player, and he’s only going to benefit from the time that he has in the side.”
“We want to play a brand of football that’s possession based but has a dynamic edge, and Mitch is the type of player that fits our requirements.”
“He can beat players one-on-one, he can go past players, he can score goals, he can start off an action and finish it, he’s skillful.”
“But most importantly he’s a player that plays for the team.”
“He has nothing but a humble attitude and works towards the team’s success,” Stubbins said.