Newcastle Jets have signed promising youngster Mitch Cooper, while also re-signing Michael Bridges.
Cooper joins the Jets on a two-year deal after playing six games for Gold Coast United in 2011/12.
The 17-year-old became the youngest person ever to captain an A-League club when he led Gold Coast United in their Round 20 match against the Melbourne Heart last season.
Cooper has also represented the Australian Joeys, most notably at last year’s FIFA Under 17 World Cup in Mexico and said he is excited to play in Jets colours next season.
"The opportunity to come and play at the Jets is great," Cooper said.
“I am excited with Gary van Egmond as coach, I’ve been with him in the Under 17’s and thought very highly of him.”
The Jets are pleased to secure Cooper at the Club.
“Mitch is another one of the excellent young players coming into the A-League,” the coach added.
“Last season Mitch showed he is capable of playing at A-League level when given the opportunity.
“We are really excited to have attracted him to Newcastle and think he has a bright future with the Jets.”
Former EPL star, Bridges has signed a one-year contract extension with the Jets and is happy to continue on at the Jets.
“I’m delighted to be back on board and it’s obviously great timing with the first week of pre-season,” Bridges said.
“I’m delighted now to finally put it to rest so I can concentrate on the rest of the season.
“I wouldn’t have gone around again and I don’t think the coaching staff would have given me the opportunity if they didn’t feel it was the right decision as well.
“I’ve looked after myself and it was great being back this week.”
Coach Gary van Egmond said Bridges plays a number of important roles in the team.
“Michael is an important signing, especially because he brings great experience to the team and support for the younger players,” the coach said.
“He also has a great attitude at training and a level of professionalism we want at the Club, as well as obviously being a good footballer.”