Union sign Serbian forward Veljko Paunović
Chester, Pa. (June 13, 2011) - Philadelphia Union announced today the signing of forward Veljko Paunović, who last played for Partizan FK of the Serbian SuperLiga. The striker, who can also play as an attacking midfielder, joins the Union after spending the majority of his professional career in Spain’s La Liga. Paunović will be eligible to play for the Union when the club visit the Vancouver Whitecaps on June 18, 10:00 p.m. Per MLS and Club policy, terms of the signing were not disclosed.
Paunović made his professional debut in 1994 with Partizan FK at the age of 17. Only a year later, Paunović made his move to Spain, where he represented seven clubs in his 13 years in the country, netting 73 goals in 341 matches. Starring the vast majority of the time with Atletico de Madrid (1996-98, 1999-00, 2001-02, 2003-05), Paunović also had stints with UD Marbella (1995-96), RCD Mallorca (1998-99, 2000-01, 2001-02), Real Oviedo S.A.D. (2000-01), CD Tenerife (2002-03), Getafe C.F.S.A.D. (2005-07) and Unión Deportiva Almería (2007-08).
WATCH: Paunović's top ten goals
Paunović was transferred to Bundesliga club Hannover 96 in 2005, and a year after returned to La Liga’s Getafe for two seasons. The striker was then sent out to FC Rubin Kazan in the Russian Premier League for a brief stint in 2007 before heading to his final Spanish destination, Almería.
The Serbian National Team called Paunović up in 2002, debuting him on February 13 during a 2-1 victory over Mexico. The striker’s second and last cap came in a friendly with Northern Ireland on April 28, 2004, where he scored the lone goal in a 1-1 draw.
Name: Veljko Paunovic
Born: August 21, 1977
Birthplace: Strumica, Macedonia
Last Club: Partizan FK – Serbia
Pronunciation: VEL-ko paoo-NO-vic