Newcastle Jets have announced the signing of long-time Eredivisie defender Kew Jaliens on a one-year contract. The 34-year-old, who will be 35 a month from today, made roughly 150 appearances for both Willem II and AZ between 1999-2011 before spending the past two seasons in Poland with Wisla Krakow.
Jaliens joins Orlando Engelaar (Melbourne Heart), Marcel Seip (Central Coast) and Rob Wielaert (Melbourne Heart) as relatively high profile 30-something Dutch players to join A-League clubs this offseason.
The Jets, who missed out on finals football last year by a single point, had the third worst defensive record in the A-League. While a 35-year-old is not likely to overwhelmingly change the abilities of what was a suspect back line last season, Newcastle will hope Jaliens' experience and leadership can translate into a more cohesive and successful effort in front of Ben Kennedy.
In a club press release, Jets CEO Robbie Middleby said:
"Kew has played at the highest level for both club and country and brings a wealth of experience to the Jets. We believe he will complement the players we already have in our squad and we're confident he can make a big impact in the A-League.
"With the number of talented young players coming through at the Jets, it is fantastic for them to have the likes of Michael Bridges, Emile Heskey and now Key to learn from."
Jaliens is expected to arrive in New South Wales within the next few weeks.