Livingston are in safe hands with Sarkic, says boss Holt

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Aston Villa goalkeeper Sarkic Matija has joined Livingston on loan (Nick Potts/PA)

Livingston boss Gary Holt believes he has filled the hole left by Liam Kelly’s exit after securing Aston Villa goalkeeper Matija Sarkic on a season-long loan.

Kelly was a stand-out performer for the Lions last term but activated a clause in his contract in order to join Queens Park Rangers for a cut-price fee.

But Holt is satisfied his side will now have a safe pair of hands in goal this season after bringing in Sarkic to challenge Ross Stewart for the number one jersey.

Sarkic was born in Grimsby but has been capped six times for Montenegro’s Under-21 side.

Holt told Livingston’s website: “Between myself, assistant manager Davie Martindale and goalkeeping coach Tony Caig we feel we have brought a fantastic keeper to the club in Matija.

“He hasn’t played a lot of first-team football but comes to us highly recommended and we have done our research on the lad which all came back very positive.

“We feel that this move is a win-win for all parties – Matija will get some much-needed game time and we are getting a goalkeeper which realistically would have been a good bit outwith our wage structure.

“Matija will come in and push for the number one jersey vacated by Liam. Between Matija and Ross I feel we are more than covered and I feel confident going into the season that we have two keepers that would be fantastic number ones.

“Competition for places is extremely healthy and is no different from any other position at the club, they need to work hard and make the jersey their own.

“Throughout pre-season and into the Betfred Cup section the fans will get a chance to see both lads in action.”

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