Joel Pereira has the talent to make it at Manchester United but must impress on loan
On a relatively quiet day for Manchester United, the club’s official website confirmed that promising goalkeeper Joel Pereira left the club on loan.
The Portuguese stopper has joined Belgian outfit KV Kortrijk for the rest of the season after his unsuccessful loan spell in his native country with Vitoria Setubal was cut short early, when United activated the release clause.
At 22, Pereira has excellent potential but is yet to truly show it and he needs this latest spell away from Old Trafford to really showcase what he can do.
He has the quality to become David de Gea’s understudy at United at some point in the future and it makes sense for him to be away from the club getting regular gametime, leaving more experienced options Sergio Romero and Lee Grant to offer immediate goalkeeping cover.
But with De Gea’s future uncertain for as long as he has not signed a new contract, Pereira has not reached the level where it would be comfortable if he was a genuine first-team option for United.
Pereira has yet to fully convince and impress during his loan spells – Englishman Dean Henderson has more eye-catching loan experience to his name, the most recent of which is currently coming at Championship high-fliers Sheffield United.
For a goalkeeper with designs on establishing himself at United, this spell in Belgium should represent an opportunity for Pereira to nail down a number one spot and keep it.
Otherwise, he won’t get too many more chances before the likes of Henderson overtake him in an already crowded pecking order and he goes the same way as talented stoppers like Sam Johnstone and Ben Amos before him and pursues a career away from United.