Deportivo La Coruna of Spain’s third choice goalkeeper, Francis Odinaka Uzoho appears on the way towards an elevation at the relegated club, following his resumption in their first team for preseason training.
Uzoho was not part of the main squad when La Coruna were relegated from La Liga last season, as he lined out for their second team in the Spanish third-tier division, but his busy spell with Nigeria at the World Cup has shot his value way up.
Although he made two first team appearances in La Liga, he was more of a regular with Deportivo’s B-team, but his exploits at the World Cup have ostensibly earned him a spot in the main squad ahead of next season.
With World Cup experience now under his gloves, following full minutes of action in all of Nigeria’s three group matches, Uzoho appears set for greater things at club level, and is now training with the first team players at La Coruna.
The 19-year-old UAE 2013 FIFA U17 World Cup Golden Eaglets-winning team’s reserve shot-stopper resumed training with Deportivo on Monday, amidst reports that he has been contacted by some top clubs for a summer transfer deal.
Uzoho, who the youngest goalkeeper to play for Nigeria at the World Cup, turned up on Monday at Depor’s training base in Spain and worked with the club’s goalkeepers’ coach, Yvan Castillo.
He was one of the early arrivals for training in Natxo González’s team, which could tip the scale in his favour this season, after breaking through Branquiazuis youth ranks to feature for the first team last season.
He made two senior appearances in La Liga last term, against Girona and Eibar, while also taking part in 26 Segunda Liga outings for Deportivo’s Fabril side.
Uzoho could now challenge for the club’s number one spot in La Liga, and step up from campaigning in the third division.
He admits his prospects and acknowledged that he will now have to justify his value by doing well in forthcoming build-up matches against Bergantiños, Ponferradina, Real Valladolid, Lugo and Real Oviedo.
Uzoho stated: “I learn from the past but never sit down thinking about the past. A new season so will a new chapter in my career begin. FORZA DEPOR IN CHRIST ALONE.”