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The Finnish footballers’ association (JPY) welcomed the news of four of its players signing a new contract after having played in the FIFPro Winter Tournament. Team JPY won this event, three weeks ago in Oslo, Norway.

 

Timo Tahvanainen was the first player from the Finnish team to sign a new contract. The midfielder has joined FF Jaro for one season. The club from Pietarsaari (Jakobstad) is playing at the highest level in Finland, the Veikkausliga. Last year FF Jaro ended in fifth place.

 

For Tahvanainen it will be a return to top level. The 24-year old player already made his debut in the Veikkausliga in 2003, but has played most of his career in the second division. His former club was JIPPO from Joensuu. Tahvanainen signed after a 1,5 week trial period at FF Jaro. ‘The experience of the FIFPro Winter Tournament was very important for me to be ready for training and playing’, he said after signing at FF Jaro.

 

Juha Tuomi, Patrik Rikama and Tommi Siekkinen signed as well. Goalkeeper Tuomi joined FC Lahti, his former club. Last year, the team dropped to the Second Division. The ambition is to return immediately. At 21, Tuomi is still a young goalkeeper, although he has already played 28 games in the Veikkausliga.

 

Rikama and Siekkinen left Finland and moved to Sweden. Rikama, the captain of the Finnish team, signed a one year contract at GIF Sundsvall from the Swedish Second  Division. The 28-year old defender played the last four years for IFK Mariehamn, from the Veikkausliga.

 

Siekkinen will play in the third league. The top goal scorer of the FIFPro Winter Tournament signed a one year contact at IFK Luleå. ‘Siekkinen was the hottest player in our team during the Tournament’, said Mika Juhola, president of the Finnish players’ association, about the 21-year old forward. ‘Siekkinen was contacted from all countries that participated in the tournament. He is a very quick player. His personal best on the 100 meters is 10.9 seconds.’