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Stags capture exciting frontman

Posted onPosted on 29th Aug
Stags capture exciting frontman

Mansfield Town are delighted to announce the signing of forward Dapo Afolayan on a half-season loan from Premier League side West Ham United.

Afolayan, 21, joined the Hammers on transfer deadline day from National League side Solihull Moors in January 2018.

Manager John Dempster said: “We’re really pleased to get this deal over the line. Dapo will be joining on loan until January. He’s somebody who will bring something different to the team.

“We’ve done a lot research on him. He’s a good character, somebody who wants to play football and score goals.

“When the opportunity came up to take him on loan we were in competition with other clubs, so we’re really pleased to have him on board.

“He’s full of energy and will run in behind and stretch teams. He’ll bring a lot of value to our squad.”

A quick, direct centre forward, Afolayan spent six years in Chelsea’s academy as a youngster, before moving to Canada with his family aged 15.

The striker then trained with Toronto FC academy, making appearances for the MLS club’s reserve team.

Upon his return to England, he enrolled onto a civil engineering course at Loughborough University, before signing permanently for Solihull Moors in January 2017.

Afolayan scored on his debut for the Moors in a 3-0 home win over Sutton United, netting 11 goals in 30 National League appearances that season. The striker scored a total of 16 goals in 38 matches during his time in the West Midlands.

He then moved to Premier League West Ham on a three-and-a-half-year contract for an undisclosed fee in 2018, appearing in Hammers’ colours for the first time in their Premier League 2 Division 1 encounter with Sunderland just five days after joining the club.

Last season, Afolayan gained experience at League Two level on a half-season loan at Oldham, going on to make ten league appearances for the Latics.