Andraz Struna will give NYCFC some much needed defensive depth. (Photo courtesy of NYCFC)
He won’t be available for Wednesday night’s home game against Sporting Kansas City, but New York City FC has added a much-needed reinforcement to its roster.
The club Wednesday announced the signing of free agent Slovenia international Andraz Struna, pending receipt of his P1 visa.
Struna, 28-year-old defender, left Scottish Premier League side Hearts this summer and signed a contract with the Major League Soccer team. The contract will run until the end of this season, with options for 2018 and 2019.
For most of his career Sturna has played mostly right back while performing in Slovenia, Poland, Greece and Scotland.
“There are many reasons why I’m glad to be here, such as the club having a solid foundation and giving me the opportunity to work with great experts,” Struna said in a statement “This is a big thing for me because I think I can learn a lot from the likes of Patrick and all of the experienced people at the club.
“My goals are always tied to team goals, so I want to do the best I can for the team. Of course, I’m also excited to live here in New York and to have this experience.”
Struna said he was quite impressed with the league.
“I have a good opinion about MLS,” he said. “It’s popular in all parts of the world and it’s getting better and better all the time. What I expect is to find is good football, great atmospheres in nice stadiums with a lot of fans.”
Since making his debut in 2012, Struna has been capped 25 times. He has score one goal — in a Euro 2016 qualifier against San Marino.
Given NYCFC’s spate of injuries, particularly on defense, head coach Patrick Vieira felt Struna will give his side depth.
“We’re entering a really important stretch of the season and I’m pleased that we were able to bring in Andraz at this stage to strengthen our squad,” he said in a press release. “Andraz is an experienced international defender, I’m looking forward to working with him on the training field.”
NYCFC will be without nine players for the KC match, including defenders Maxime Chanot, Ronald Matarrita and Ethan White.