Sydney FC academy prospect Anton Mlinaric has joined Croatian club Dinamo Zagreb on loan until the end of the season, following a successful two week trial period.
The 18-year-old centre-back has been training with the reigning Croatian champions in hopes of being offered a spot on the team, as previously reported by The World Game's Dave Lewis at the beginning of the month.
Mlinaric grew up in the Bossley Park area of Sydney and was recruited by the Sky Blues Academy at 14-years-old, where he has been training and playing for the NPL and Youth League sides for the last four years, as well as appearing for the Joeys at the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup.
Speaking from Zagreb, dual citizen Mlinaric expressed his immense excitement at the opportunity to develop his game in Croatia and praised Sydney FC for kicking off his career.
“It is a huge honour and feels surreal to get this amazing opportunity at such a young age,” Mlinaric said. “I hope to learn and grow immensely as a player and as a person every day."
"Developing at Sydney FC since the age of 14 has been a major factor in me receiving this opportunity.
"The club helped me to learn and express myself each and every time I stepped onto the pitch, while creating a professional environment.
"The Sydney FC culture sets you up to be the best player and person you can be."
Mlinaric also thanked senior centre-back pairing Alex Wilkinson and Ryan McGowan for their help with his development at the Sky Blues.
“Wilko [Wilkinson] and Gowser [McGowan] have been huge role models for me," Mlinaric said.
“To have such experienced and respected centre backs to look up to and learn from everyday has helped me a lot.”