The Vancouver Whitecaps bolstered their defense on Friday, officially announcing the signing of New Zealand international goalkeeper Stefan Marinovic, who will join the club through 2018 with options to extend his stay for 2019 and 2020.
Marinovic joins the Whitecaps after his recent participation in the FIFA Confederations Cup with the All Whites, where he started all three games. The 25-year-old Auckland native will occupy an international roster spot for Vancouver, who sent $50,000 of General Allocation Money to the Montreal Impact in a separate trade on Friday in order to attain the spot and make room for the goalkeeper.
"Stefan has all the attributes that you want in a goalkeeper," said Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson in a statement. "He's big, he's strong, he's agile, he has all the fundamentals, and he's a winner.
“At only 25 years old, he has already gained a ton of playing experience in Germany, as well as internationally with New Zealand. Stefan will increase the level of competition with our keepers and we are excited to welcome him to the group," he added.
Marinovic, who will not be eligible for Sunday’s game against the Portland Timbers (6:30 pm ET | FS1, FOX Deportes, TSN1/3/4/5 in Canada), joins the Whitecaps from the German third division, where he has 100 league appearances with SV Wehen Wiesbaden, FC Ismaning, 1860 Munich II and, most recently, Unterhaching.
At the international level, the 25-year-old has 19 appearances for New Zealand’s senior side, including nine 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.