Ljubo, Donny join Jets

The Newcastle Jets have boosted their defensive stocks ahead of the Asian Champions League with Ljubo Milicevic agreeing to a one-year-deal, while Dutch striker Donny de Groot has also signed on.

The Newcastle Jets have boosted their defensive stocks ahead of the Asian Champions League with Ljubo Milicevic agreeing to a one-year-deal, while Dutch striker Donny de Groot has also signed on.

Ljubo Milicevic, a former Socceroo who had a troublesome spell at Melbourne Victory, is set to fill the defensive hole left by Mark Milligan, who has moved to Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua.

The 27-year-old comes to the Jets with big credentials having played for four Swiss clubs FC Zurich, FC Basel, FC Thun and BSC Young Boys, and captained the Thun side in their UEFA Champions League campaign. He has also represented Australia six times including at the 2005 Confederations Cup.

His career has hit a snag since returning to Australia, and he was dropped by the Victory after just one-injury-plagued season.

"We are very proud to announce the signing of Ljubo Milicevic this afternoon. We believe that he is a player that can easily become a quality member of our squad and contribute significantly in terms of his ability and leadership," Jets- Chief Executive Officer John Tsatsimas said.

"At 27 years of age he certainly has plenty of life left in his career, we have no doubts whatsoever that Ljubo has a great amount of football to play, and we are proud that he will be doing so in Newcastle, one of the true heartlands of football in this country."

De Groot, 29, joins the club from De Graafschap, having also played for FC Utrecht, FC Volendam, FC Emmen and RBC Roosendaal as well as AEK Larnaca in Cyrpus.

"It's great to have Donny as part of our club and we welcome him wholeheartedly to Newcastle. He is a player of real pedigree, and someone who can certainly add a significant amount to our football club. He has considerable experience both on and off the field, which can only be of benefit to our team," Tsatsimas said.

"We are very pleased to have Donny join our squad; we believe he can be an asset not only in the A-League but in our first Champions League tilt also."