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12

Simon Sluga

Goalkeeper

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Biography

Date of birth

17/03/1993

Height

190 cm

Signed

19/07/2019

Country

Croatia

The Hatters broke a 30-year transfer record when they signed Simon Sluga from Croatian top flight side HNK Rijeka for a guaranteed fee of over €1.5 million in July 2019.

The 28-year-old Croatia international put pen to paper on a three-year contract, with the Hatters board agreeing to smash the previous highest fee paid to sign Lars Elstrup in 1989.

Simon spent time as a youth in the academy at Italian giants Juventus, with many of the Town lads already familiar with the 6ft 3in stopper, having come up against him in the pre-season friendly played against Europa League qualifiers Rijeka in Slovenia in 2018.

Sluga – who won the domestic league title with Rijeka in 2016-17 and played in the subsequent two-legged Europa League win over AC Milan – has lifted the Croatian League Cup for the second time and made his debut for the World Cup runners-up in 2019.

He has since gone onto play for his country twice more, coming up against Georgia and Turkey - both of which were international friendlies.

Sluga went on to make 33 Championship appearances in his first season as a Hatter, overcoming a difficult start to flourish in 2020, making a number of vital saves, producing man of the match performances and keeping six clean sheets in total. 

His form continued into the 2020/21 season, so much so that at the end of it, he was crowned LTST player of the Season and Bobbers Travel Away Player of the Season. He played 39 times in the Championship, keeping 12 clean-sheets and proving to be a reliable pair of hands in between the sticks.

As a reward for his displays, he was a part of Croatia's 26-man squad for Euro 2020, providing back-up to Dominik Livakovic.

 

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