FC Porto today announced the arrival of Danny Loader on a two-year-deal, becoming the first English player to sign for the club in its entire history.
The 19-year-old had been involved in lengthy contract negotiations with his previous club Reading FC, ultimately he decided not to renew and left the Royals at the end of June, thus being available to FC Porto on a free transfer. Loader will link up initially with FC Porto B, with a clear pathway to the first team should his performances warrant a step-up.
‘It is fantastic and even surreal to be here. FC Porto is a very big club. As soon as I arrived I immediately felt the greatness of the club and the atmosphere that is lived here. It is a blessing to be here, sincerely. ” – Loader via FC Porto
Kickstarting his career
His transition from youth football to senior has been far from seamless however and Loader will be hoping this move to Portugal provides the catalyst for kickstarting his career. The young attacker has been touted as a top talent for the last few years, scoring goals in abundance for both Reading’s U18 and 23 sides as well as at international level, representing England from U16 right up to U20 level. However, at senior level, this success has yet to be replicated. 28 Championship appearances have brought just one goal and one assist. He hasn’t had much recent game time either with the majority of these appearances coming in the 18/19 season under José Gomes, more recently he has hardly featured, starting just ONE game in the Championship in the 19/20 season.
At just 19, the forward is just getting started. No doubt he will have looked at the success of Marcus Edwards, a fellow England youth international who moved to Portugal in order to gain precious game time and start his senior career. A new environment, new country and a new league may be the fresh start Loader needs in order to really show what he is capable of and that, is scoring goals and lots of them.