All Whites Max Mata and Nando Pijnaker linked with move to English club

posted in: All Whites, News

All Whites Max Mata and Nando Pijnaker could soon be on the move to English League One club Shrewsbury Town.

Town manager Matt Taylor watched the New Zealand duo play for Sligo Rovers against Drogheda United in a League of Ireland match last Friday.

Main photo: All Whites striker Max Mata … attracting interest from English clubs.

The Irish Sun reported Taylor was there to “run the rule” over the New Zealanders, with Taylor keen to sew up a deal to sign Mata ahead of Shrewsbury’s League One opener against Cheltenham on Saturday August 5.

Sligo would receive an undisclosed fee for leading scorer Mata (23), with potential add-on payments, as the striker still has 18 months left on his contract.

The newspaper said newly-promoted League One club Carlisle United was also interested in Mata.

Mata and Pijnaker (24) signed with Sligo last year.

Mata played his club football in New Zealand for Onehunga Sports, Eastern Suburbs and the Wellington Phoenix reserves, and made his All Whites debut in 2019.

Nando Pijnaker … has become a regular member of the New Zealand national squad.

Pijnaker played for Ngongotaha, Western Suburbs and Eastern Suburbs in New Zealand before heading overseas in 2019 and building a professional career leading to his regular inclusion in All Whites squads.

Other New Zealand footballers to play for Sligo Rovers have included Auckland City’s Ryan de Vries and former All Whites coach Kevin Fallon.

If Mata and Pijnaker move to Shrewsbury, they’ll join a club that counts Declan Edge, Rory Fallon, Benjamin van den Broek and Kris Bright among their former players.

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