Reading take India youth international Brandon Fernandes on trial

The midfielder, who is currently plying his trade in South Africa, previously caught the eye of English scouts at a soccer skills tournament and will join the Royals temporarily
Reading have taken India youth international midfielder Brandon Fernandes on a two-week trial.

The 19-year-old, who plays in South Africa for ASD Cape Town, has been capped at Under-19 level by his country and will join the Royals temporarily and has previously caught the eye of English scouts in a Manchester United Soccer Skills tournament in 2008.

The player's UK-based management company, Kemp Thornton, revealed the news to The Times of India, adding: "He is looking forward to the test.

"It's fantastic and we can't wait to see what the rest of the week brings."

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Mike Steptoe, ASD's director, is confident of the youngster's ability to make it big in professional football.

He said: "Everyone in the footballing world told me that I was wasting my time looking in India for players that could one day play in European leagues.

"But there is as much raw talent in India like anywhere else. Brandon is a super talent and regardless of the outcome of this trial, we believe he has a future in professional soccer."

The teenage star's father, Jaju Fernandes, a former executive committee member of the Goa Football Association (GFA), was quoted as saying: "We have always dreamed of seeing our son play football at the highest level.

"European football is glamourous but we are under no illusions that it will be a smooth ride. Whatever happens at the trials, we are sure that Brandon is meant for bigger things in life."