On paper, Antonio Delamea seems like a great signing for the New England Revolution. The center back was a standout while playing with Slovenian side Olimpija and even donned the captain’s armband. He recently earned a call up to the Slovenia National Team, playing 45 minutes against Poland in a friendly. Best of all, he’s only 25 years old.
Paper can sometimes be different from reality, however, so we decided to get some insight from a supporter who has closely followed Delamea’s career.
Mitja Gorisek (@mietke), an avid fan of Olimpija, took some time to answer a few questions about the Revolution’s newest acquisition.
The Bent Musket (TBM): What are Delamea’s strengths?
Mitja Gorisek (MG): Antonio is very good on tackling, marking and heading, but he can be dangerous in offense too. He positions himself good as well and is very calm on the pitch. He also doesn't get a lot of cards.
TBM: What are Delamea’s weaknesses?
MG: Maybe his weakness is that he is not so good technically, but this weakness is compensated by hard work. Sometimes he can make some bad decisions, but he stays calm after making a mistake.
TBM: Should Revs fans be concerned about Delamea’s past injuries?
MG: Toni has had problems with his knees two times in his career. After second recovery, he came back on 5.11.2015 and after that, he didn't have any problems and played almost all games for Olimpija. He was an important part of the team in the autumn part of the season. Nobody can know how long he will be healthy, but I think, with some luck, he will become an important part of the Revs team.
TBM: How would you describe Delamea’s presence in the locker room?
MG: Antonio is a really nice person, so I think that his presence in the locker room will be very positive for the NE Revolution. His role in Revs locker room will be different, because in Olimpija he was a captain. But he will adapt to different situation without any problems. I really hope that he will become one of the respected parts in the Revs locker room.
TBM: How high should expectations be for Delemea?
MG: This is a tough question. The level in MLS is higher then in Slovenian Prva liga, so he will have to step to the higher level. If he will get a chance to play, I think that he can play at this level and is able to contribute a lot to the team. If he will stay healthy and if he gets the chance, I think that organization will be satisfied with him. He is the first Slovenian player in MLS and his good performance can open the door for some other talented Slovenian players in future. I’m not happy that he is leaving Ljubljana, but I'm happy that he will now play on Gillette stadium.
If your interested in more insight from Mitja Gorisek, you can find him on Twitter (@mietke).