With Dean Henderson overtaking David de Gea as Manchester United’s number one, spare a thought for Joel Pereira.
When Jose Mourinho was manager, Pereira seemed like a more promising prospect, impressing on an early loan to Rochdale and featuring for United’s first team in pre-season.
To say it has not gone well for Pereira since, would be an understatement.
Mixed to poor loans in Portugal, Belgium, and then at Hearts last year led to very few takers coming forward for Pereira last summer.
He had to settle for a loan move to Huddersfield Town in the Championship, which wasn’t a bad move in itself, except he has been the back-up.
Up until last night, Pereira had played only one game all season for the Terriers, conceding four in a defeat to Stoke.
Recall ends badly
Pereira came back into Huddersfield’s team last night to play his first game since November. He was a late change after the team’s first choice ‘keeper Ryan Schofield fell ill.
While he could hardly complain at getting an opportunity after a five month absence, Pereira was given the worst game possible, away to Championship leaders Norwich City.
The United loanee was at the wrong end of a 7-0 hammering as Huddersfied slipped down into 19th on goal difference, having begun the night in 18th.
Norwich had 10 shots on target and Pereira conceded seven of them.
Pereira has now conceded 11 goals in two matches, a statistic which does not reflect well on him at all.
Heading for the exit
Pereira’s contract at Manchester United expires in the summer and he will be released.
He is now 24, and needs to kickstart his career after a woeful last two years.
This loan deal at Huddersfield has been a total waste of time for him, spending the campaign sitting on the bench or in the stands.
When he has played, he has looked bereft of confidence like at Hearts last season.
He will likely have to settle for a club further down the leagues in England, or a second tier club abroad.
The Portuguese goalkeeper has talent, but his potential is at risk of going to waste.
He needs to find a club and manager who can believe in him, and play in an environment without pressure, to try and rediscover what once made him so highly thought of.
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