Maduka Okoye To Stay At Sparta Rotterdam, After Signing For Watford

Maduka Okoye To Stay At Sparta Rotterdam, After Signing For Watford

Sparta Rotterdam of Holland goalkeeper, Emil Maduka Okoye will still spend the whole of this season with the Dutch Eredivisie club, despite signing a five-year-deal with Watford of England.

This much gathered from details of the deal that will see the 22-year-old Super Eagles’ shot-stopper become the fourth Nigerian player in Watford’s current squad.

The Hornets have a strong history of Nigerian players, which included in recent past Odion Jude Ighalo, Isaac Success, Tom Dele-Bashiru and Joseph Hungbo.

He will now link forces in Claudio Ranieri’s side with William Troost-Ekong, Oghenekaro Etebo and Emmanuel Dennis Bonaventure, as The Hornets seek to revive their fortunes that have taken a dip since Ighalo’s exit in 2017.

The new arrival at Vicarage Road now is Germany-born Okoye, who shot to prominence in the German fifth division while lining out for the reserves’ squad of Fortuna Dusseldorf, but his regular spots in Nigeria’s main squad have catapulted his career in recent time.

He was honoured as Sparta Rotterdam’s Player of The 2020-21 Season, after his impressive debut campaign and he has already played every minute of their games so far in the ongoing campaign, during which he has established himself fully in Hendrikus Fraser’s team.

His ascent began since he joined the Dutch club from Dusseldorf on a free transfer in July 2020 and he is now expected to complete his switch to Watford in the January window, but will then immediately return to Rotterdam on loan for rest of the current campaign.

The 6ft 6in tall half-caste netminder, who  has made 13 appearances for Nigeria since making his debut in a 1-1 draw with Brazil in 2019, began his career with Borussia Monchengladbach of Germany, from which he joined Bayer Leverkusen and then Dusseldorf.

He will aim to shore up his value much further while spending the remainder of this season on loan at Sparta, where he has already pulled off 43 appearances, posting 12 shutouts and conceding 57 goals.

Although he kept his first clean sheet in the Eredivisie this term during Saturday’s 3-0 win over Willem II, Okoye’s personal surge has not rubbed off on Sparta, who are struggling for results and currently occupy 16th spot with 10 points from 12 games.

The Hornets are now looking towards better days, as they stated on their official website: “Watford FC is pleased to announce that it has reached agreement to sign highly-rated young goalkeeper Maduka Okoye, on a five-and-a-half-year deal that will begin on January 1, 2022.

“The Nigeria international joins the Hornets for an undisclosed fee from Eredivisie outfit Sparta Rotterdam, to where he will return on loan until the end of the 2021/22 campaign.

“A regular starter for the Dutch club, Okoye has lined up between the sticks in each of their games so far this season, while he has made 13 appearances for his country since debuting in a 1-1 draw with Brazil in 2019.

“The 6ft 6in shot-stopper’s consistent displays for both club and country have seen him linked with some of Europe’s biggest clubs, but he has now put pen to paper on a long-term deal with the Golden Boys. Welcome to Watford, Maduka!”

Okoye also took to social media to celebrate the deal and he posted: “I’m overwhelmed to sign for @watfordfcofficial , to play in the Premier League is something I’ve been dreaming about since I was a little boy💫I can’t wait to get started with the team upcoming season 2022/2023.”
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