Newcastle Jets has completed the signing of former Australian youth international goalkeeper Tomislav Arčaba on a contract through to the end of the current Hyundai A-League campaign.
Arčaba, who progressed through the youth system at Wollongong Wolves in the early 2000s, has played professionally in Ireland, Romania, and Serbia in the past.
Most recently Arčaba plied his trade with OFK Beograd in Belgrade.
The 30-year-old custodian has trained on and off with the Jets over the past four months, and while he hasn’t been with the first team squad Arčaba has been following a program set for him by the Club’s goalkeeping mentor Jess Vanstrattan.
Arčaba said he is delighted to have penned his first contract in the Hyundai A-League after initially missing the chance to join the Jets earlier in the campaign due to contractual complications abroad.
“It was a bit of a headache two months ago but I am really happy that everything has now come through,” Arčaba said. “Thanks to Jess (Vanstrattan) and the coaching staff for believing in me and giving me the opportunity.”
“I am very happy to be in Newcastle and this is a great way to start the New Year.”
“I am here to help and if the coaching staff decides that it is going to be beneficial for the Club or for the team for me to play than of course I am ready and willing. But I am also here to back Jack (Duncan) the whole way.”
Arčaba, who was involved in the National Soccer League (NSL), said he looking forward to developing his game under Vanstrattan.
“I was involved in the NSL so it feels great to be involved in the (Hyundai) A-League as well,” he said.
“After the break-up of the NSL I went to Ireland, from Ireland I went to Romania, and from Romania I went to Serbia. So I am a bit of a journeyman, but it has been a great experience. It is nice to be back in Australia and playing in the top flight.”
“He (Vanstrattan) has got a lot of experience and I think he is one of the best goalkeeping coaches in Australia. I think he has got a big career ahead, and I am really thankful to be able to work with him,” he said.
Arčaba will wear the number 50 kit for the Club until the end of the season.
He has been promoted to the squad for Sunday’s clash with Perth Glory at McDonald Jones Stadium. Kick-off is at 5:00pm.
Updated Newcastle Jets Preliminary Squad vs. Perth Glory: 2.Daniel MULLEN, 3.Jason HOFFMAN, 4.Nigel BOOGAARD (c), 6.Steven UGARKOVIC, 7.Andrew HOOLE, 8.Mateo POLJAK, 9.Aleksandr KOKKO, 10.Wayne BROWN, 15.Andrew NABBOUT, 16.Nicholas COWBURN, 18.MA Leilei, 19.Morten NORDSTRAND, 20.Jack DUNCAN (gk), 22.Lachlan JACKSON, 23.Devante CLUT, 28.John KOUTROUMBIS, 50.Tomislav ARČABA (gk)
**one to be omitted**
Ins: 9.Aleksandr KOKKO (promoted), 50.Tomislav ARČABA (gk) (new signing)
Outs: 30.Pierce CLARK (gk) (omitted)
Unavailable: 1.Ben KENNEDY (gk) (achilles – season), 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI (knee – 1-3 weeks), 13.Ivan VUJICA (hamstring – 3-5 weeks), 21.Daniel ALESSI (knee – season)
Newcastle Jets vs. Perth Glory - Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Round 15
Venue: McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle
Referee: Stephen Lucas
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on Fox Sports 505 from 4:30pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 1 (New Zealand)
Radio Broadcast: 1233 ABC Newcastle, ABC Radio Perth, ABC Local Radio WA, Grandstand Digital, Online & via the ABC Radio Mobile App – A-League Live
Social Media: Join the match conversation using #NEWvPER