Bazunu is heading for Fratton Park.
Ireland goalkeeper Gavin Bazunu is set to join League One side Portsmouth on a loan deal from Manchester City for the upcoming season, the Irish Independent reports today.
Gavin Bazunu will be returning to the third tier of English football, having spent 2020/21 at Rochdale, who were eventually relegated to League Two. He is likely to spend more time in the upper echelons of the division this year, with Portsmouth eyeing promotion after missing out on a place in the play-offs by just two points last season.
Senior international recognition for Bazunu.
Bazunu has very much come to the fore in Stephen Kenny’s plans for the Ireland team. The Dublin native made his senior debut in the acrimonious defeat to Luxembourg back in March, a game in which he was praised for his organisation and communication.
He followed this up with starts against Qatar, Andorra and Hungary. Despite making a strong save to prevent Hungary’s Adam Szalai from scoring, Bazunu was replaced at half time by the equally impressive Caoimhin Kelleher, as Kenny opted to give both young goalkeepers some time on the field in front of a large crowd.
Superb from Gavin Bazunu – the teenager denies the hosts with a terrific point-blank save https://t.co/n3vd2sk3dM #RTEsoccer pic.twitter.com/0afXZLFHgM
— RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) June 8, 2021
Included in Champions League squad.
Gavin Bazunu came through the Shamrock Rovers academy before being signed by Manchester City in 2019. He was named in the club’s Champions League squad for their round of 16 second leg match against Real Madrid in August 2020 and went on to sign a contract extension that will keep him tied to the Mancunian club until 2024.
The 19-year-old became a popular figure at Rochdale during his spell on loan there last season, making 32 appearances for the Greater Manchester side. Portsmouth had been looking for a goalkeeper after last season’s number one Craig MacGillivray joined Charlton Athletic earlier this month.
Irish eyes will be watching Bazunu at Portsmouth.
Pompey’s Fratton Park ground is famous for its match-day atmosphere and, subject to the number of supporters being allowed to attend games this season, this aspect of the loan should provide valuable experience for the Ireland goalkeeper.
Stephen Kenny won’t be the only manager keeping a close eye on Bazunu’s progress, with Man City boss Pep Guardiola also likely to be keeping tabs on how his young goalie gets on.
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