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28/07/2014 14:46, Report by Adam Marshall

Keeper focus: Joel Pereira

In a special feature running this week on ManUtd.com, Academy goalkeeping coach Alan Fettis provides the lowdown on the club's young stoppers...

Joel Castro Pereira (Born: Boudevilliers, Switzerland, 28.6.1996):

"Joel developed well last season – he’s a good learner who picks things up very quickly. His English is now excellent.  He wants to improve like all the goalkeepers do. He’s competitive and often has penalty competitions with the other players with Nando’s as the prize! He has the character that he doesn’t want to be beaten. Joel has potential to be a top goalkeeper and is progressing well.

"He was recommended to us by our European scouts, Peter Braund and David Friio, and we brought him across. We had a look at him in a game against Bolton Wanderers, which is not easy because, even at Under-16 level, their style of play would not have been something he was used to. The first thing he had to do was come for a high ball from a long throw-in, between four or five bodies, and he caught it comfortably. 

"We thought this was impressive considering it was the first thing he had to do. As the game went on, he handled the ball with his feet quickly, and made saves. Even as somebody who didn’t speak a lot of English, he was trying to talk and organise the defence. He made an impression, which is what you want from a trialist.  

"Joel still had work to do technically and we still needed to work on some other facets of his game but that’s normal. We therefore pursued our interest and eventually signed him from Neuchetal Xamax, in Switzerland."


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