“You have to trade quality to receive quality back.”
These are the words San Diego Sockers General Manager Sean Bowers said today after trading talented midfielder Christian Segura to Utica City FC. However, the player coming back to San Diego in exchange may be the piece to finally bring the Ron Newman Cup back to its rightful home in America’s Finest City.
Slavisa Ubiparipovic, a man who scored 40 points in the 2018-2019 season, will be coming to the West Coast to suit up for the Sockers.
Ubiparipovic, a native of Bosnia and naturalized US citizen, will be entering his ninth season of arena soccer as he has spent time with both the Syracuse Silver Knights and the rebranded Utica City FC. In 2011, he won the MISL Rookie of the Year award after netting 22 goals with 14 assists (36 points) in 24 games played.
The 2019 season was perhaps the best he’s had in his career. In 19 games, the left-footed striker scored a career-high 40 points by scoring 21 goals and garnering 19 assists. His success helped lead Utica City FC to a 17-7 record and a spot in the playoffs. Ubiparipovic was named to the All-MASL Third Team at the end of the season.
He is already well familiar with several Sockers players as he was selected to represent the United States in the 2019 World MiniFootball Federation Worldcup in Australia. On a team with Kraig Chiles, Taylor Bond, Brian Farber, Travis Pittman, and Boris Pardo, Ubiparipovic scored two goals and an assist for a Team USA that made it to the Round of 16.
However, to get Ubiparipovic, the team had to send Segura to Utica City FC to complete the deal. He appeared in 15 games for San Diego while scoring six goals and five assists. Segura will be remembered most for scoring the tying goal in the Pacific Division League against Tacoma to send the game to overtime.
Ubiparipovic is the first offensive player to join the Sockers. The team has signed goalkeeper Diego Arriaga while inking defenders Emmanuel Aguirre and Luis Piffer to contracts. The Sockers have also promoted defender Ismael Rojo from the MASL2.
San Diego will begin to play on November 24th at home against the Express and, with Slavisa Ubiparipovic on the roster, expect to compete for the MASL Championship and secure the Ron Newman Cup.