Andrew Hogg seals move to Paralimni in Cyprus Published on: 09-06-2012
Malta goalkeeper Andrew Hogg will continue his career in Cyprus next season after joining Enosis Neon Paralimini.
Hogg, 27, completed his switch to Paralimni yesterday after inking a one-year contract with an option to extend it by another year.
“It’s a new goal for me,” Hogg told The Times after being officially presented as a Paralimni player.
“It’s something I’ve been looking forward to for quite some time as I was keen on a new challenge.”
Hogg’s move to an overseas club had been on the cards after talks over a new contract with Valletta broke down last week.
As reported this week, three clubs in Cyprus were on Hogg’s trail but it was Paralimni who won the race for his signature.
“Out of the three Cypriot clubs showed interest, Enosis Neon Paralimni came across as the most professional,” Hogg said.
“After talking to my advisor, we decided that this was the best option for me.
“Paralimni’s aim for next season is to finish in the top six in the championship.”
Last season, Paralimni finished 11th in the 14-strong league.
German midfielder Heiner Backhaus, who is being linked with a move to newly-promoted Premier League side Rabat Ajax, set the wheels in motion for Hogg’s move to Paralimni.
Confirmation of Hogg’s switch to a new club signals the end of his five-year spell with the Citizens with whom he won three league titles.
“I had a very successful time with Valletta and I cherished every minute of it,” Hogg said.
“I’m reaching my prime as a goalkeeper. After winning several honours with the best club in Malta, I felt this was the right time for me to move on.
“I’ve come to a place where I want to be seen and test myself in a new league.”
Hogg, who started Malta’s 2-0 friendly win over Luxembourg last Saturday in Pietro Ghedin’s first match in charge of the national team, will join his new Paralimni team-mates on July 2 for the start of pre-season training.
Justin Haber is widely tipped to replace Hogg at Valletta. The experienced keeper, who is also Hogg’s main rival for Malta’s no.1 shirt, has already held talks with Valletta president Victor Sciriha.
Haber, who turns 31 today, is a free agent after terminating his contract with Greek club Kerkyra a few months ago.
Valletta, who have appointed Mark Miller, formerly of Hibs, as their new coach, will begin their pre-season on Wednesday.
The champions are engaged in efforts to sign three new Brazilian players.
Meanwhile, Malta striker Daniel Bogdanovic has rejected reports that he has signed a long-term contract with Mosta FC.
Bogdanovic told The Times that he has a verbal agreement to join Mosta if he decides to return to Maltese football but made it clear that he’s still assessing his options.
“First, I deny widespread re-ports that I’ve signed for Mosta,” Bogdanovic said.
“I’m still considering my options as my aim is to keep playing abroad but if I decide to come back to Malta, I’ve promised Mosta that I will play for them.”
Bogdanovic started 2011/12 on the books of Blackpool but spent one month on loan at Rochdale before joining League One side Notts County on loan until the end of the season.
The former Barnsley striker has been offered a new contract by Notts County while Blackpool have an option to extend his deal for another season.
Bogdanovic, 32, has also been made aware of interest from a club in Cyprus.
Newly-promoted Division One club Gżira United have been one of the most active clubs in the close season so far.
The Maroons have reached agreement with three new players, namely veteran Jeffrey Chetcuti, who started last season with Qormi, Pierre Grima, who last played for Mqabba, and Jean Paul Scerri, formerly of Lija Athletic.
Gżira, who have named Eric Schembri as technical director, are also interested in David Camilleri, Massimo Grima, Alfred Effiong and Thiago Mazzitelli.
Source - Times of Malta