They won’t all get a contract, however the figure of Finnish trialists in Premium Liiga has sensibly increased since last season.
Rumori has checked one by one who they were by getting comments from those who know them best: club officials and managers.
Out of the four trialists who have came from across the gulf, only Sakari Tukiainen has managed to earn a contract at FC Flora. By now, we know Sakari Tukiainen very well thanks to Atlantis FC spokeperson’s words.
But what about the other three? Let’s see what they tell us.
The latest arrival is Juuso Laitinen, one of the candidates for a central defender job at Levadia. Juuso trained during the week with Levadia and played a friendly game against FC Infonet, the least important featuring many players from the double team. A sign that might hint at the fact he was not chosen in favour of a Belarusian trialist (Artem Rakhmanov). ‘Juuso is a very physical player,’ supported his cause Tomi Leivo Jokimäki, club official at Jazz Pori. The 24-year-old Finnish ‘can play in many positions in the field and can give his best as a defensive midfielder or central defender.’ Jokimäki explained that Laitinen will not continue at Jazz since the club is looking for a different type of profile. Laitinen has played 89 games in Ykkönen (the Finnish second flight) and scored three goals. He represented both Jazz Pori and FC KooTeePee. Before that he account for 39 appearances in Kakkonen, the third flight.
Before Laitinen, FC Infonet were testing a striker, Petteri Rönkkö, a 29-year-old player who collected 26 games and 6 goals in last season in Ykkönen. ‘Petteri is an experienced player,’ said Jouni Lehtimaki, manager at JIPPO. ‘He is really a team player and a good communicator. He has everything inside him to get a contract and have good games in Premium Liiga.’ The reason why he is not continuing with the Joensuu club is that JIPPO was relegated and he wants to play on a higher level. FC Infonet, who meanwhile have lost Vladislav Ivanov to Uzbekistan, have not decided to hire him yet. They also sold their topscorer, Manucho, to USM Alger.
In the same league as Tukiainen played also 23-year-old Vili Verneri Roivainen. Former player of SC Kufu-98, he showed his skills in 14 games in Finnish 3rd division and netted one aganist PK Keski-Uusimaa. His career brought him to Finnish top clubs as MyPa, KTP and KuPS but success did not follow.
Former KuPS coach Jouni Jätti (also a coach of Mart Poom in 1992), is now working in SC Kufu and said to RdS that Roivanen is a strong and physical player who is able to use both of his feet. He also added that the best position for him is central defender or central midfielder.
For Narva Trans he has played in two pre-season games. On the 10th on January he played 90’ minutes against Pärnu Linnameeskond in a 3-0 victory in which he managed to get in the score sheet. A week later he left again a good impression in a victory against Tartu Tammeka, 85 minutes and a goal under his belt.
'We promised him that in two weeks we will let him know if we sign him or not,' declared the club's chairman, Nikolai Burdakov, to local paper Põhjarannik. Two weeks are now over and any info about the contract hasn’t been revealed yet.