New York City Football Club Wednesday announced that it has signed defender Mitja Ilenič from Slovenian side NK Domžale through 2026 with an option for 202.

His signing is pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate and P1 visa.

Ilenič is expected to vie for the spot vacated by former NYCFC right back Anton Tinnerholm, who returned to his former Swedish team, Malmo FF after a five-year stint with the MLS side.

The 18-year-old Slovenian right back made 32 appearances in the first division of Slovenia, scoring three goals across all competitions with The Yellows.

He has made seven appearances for the Slovenian youth national team at all youth levels. Ilenič became the second youngest player to play for the Slovenian Under-21 national team at the age of 17 years, two months and 27 days.

“We are always looking to attract young talent to our club from across the world,” NYCFC sporting director David Lee said in a statement. “Despite his age, Mitja has already accumulated a significant amount of senior football experience and was one of the most highly sought-after young talents in Europe. It’s a testament to the work we have done in the past years, that New York City Football Club will continue to be seen as the best place for young players to impact our team, compete for championships and develop their game to reach their maximum potential.”

Lee wasn’t finished lavishing praise on Ilenič.

“Ilenič is an attack-minded right back who is comfortable in possession, has excellent physical attributes and can impact the game in the final third,” he said. “We will support Mitja as it’s his first move to a club outside his home country, and as he adapts to a new environment. We look forward to seeing him compete and contribute this season and beyond.”

The 5-10, 156-lb. Ilenič made his professional debut for Domžale in May 2021 in a league match against NK Aluminij Kidricevo at the age of 16. He also played in the UEFA Youth League and the UEFA European U-21 Championship qualifying.

“I am excited to join New York City Football Club,” he said in a statement. “It’s a great club with a strong coaching staff and talented players. I want to help the team compete across all competitions this season and look forward to meeting the team in preseason.

“I want to thank the club for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to continuing my development. I will work hard every day to improve and contribute in any way possible. It’s an honor to be representing New York City, I look forward to playing our first game at home in front of our fans.”