This article is part of Football League World’s ‘Rewind’ series, this content strand is where we rewind back to a particular moment at a club, assess the initial reaction from the fans, and then proceed to evaluate and reflect on whether fans were right to react in that way….
Joao Pedro is showing exactly why he is regarded as one of the top prospects in world football.
Watford announced the deal to sign the Fluminese wonderkid in October 2018 when he was just 16 years of age, showing a great deal of forward planning as they invested in the future.
The prospect of him making an impact at first team level seemed a million miles away, but finally supporters of the Hornets are seeing what this Brazilian starlet is capable of.
In this FLW Rewind we take a look at how supporters responded to the announcement of his signing compared to almost two years later as a first team regular.
The exciting youngster's contract will commence in January 2020, once he has turned 18.
— Watford Football Club (@WatfordFC) October 19, 2018
Well done watford that is a good signing
— Gary (@gary2042) October 19, 2018
It's gonna be a long time to wait but this man is gonna be the next big ting!
— Couch (@AmbroseCouch) October 19, 2018
We saw him in two national youth tournaments. In one of them, Fluminense finished in the 2nd place. He is great
— Daniel Kottler Burman 😷 (@DKBurman) October 20, 2018
Is this going to be Richarlison 2.0
— Transthony Rightstano (@BethTheQT) October 20, 2018
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Nice looking forward to him joining us
— $LENDERMAN🥀 (@SlendermanXXI) October 21, 2018
Hi Watford fans. He's not like Richarlison. He has potential to be so much better than Richarlison.
— Daniel Kottler Burman 😷 (@DKBurman) October 19, 2018
Joao Pedro’s start to life in England could hardly have played further into his hands.
After finally arriving at Vicarage Road in January this year it was always going to be a big challenge to overtake Watford’s wealth of attacking talent to establish himself in the first team.
With the Hornets battling relegation the 19-year-old was limited to just five substitute appearances in the second half of the season as he adapted to life in a new country and continent.
Relegation was confirmed and Pedro was at a crossroads in his young career – either he flies the nest of he gets his head down and proves himself in the rough and tumble of the Championship.
Based on his displays it seems that the forward voted overwhelmingly in favour of the second option.
Pedro has been a first team regular at Vicarage Road this term as he leads the line for the promotion-chasing Hornets.
After 11 appearances so far, the starlet has started nine of those fixtures and scored four goals in the process – not bad for a young player who is still adapting to England’s physical style of play.
The season is very much in its infancy but if Pedro can continue showing his current levels of performance then he could be about to play a starring role in Watford’s promotion back to the Premier League.