India Under-19 footballer Brandon Fernandes' trial stint in England created quite a stir today with reports of him being offered one million dollar by Premiership side Reading FC doing the rounds only to be dismissed by his father.
Reports earlier in the day said that newly promoted Reading FC, which is now languishing at the bottom of English Premier League table after a series of losses, offered the Goa player USD one million (Rs 5.4 crores).
Denials came in swiftly, quoting Brandon's agent in England and officials of Cape Town-based Africa Soccer Development (ASD) Academy where he is now plying trade.
Brandon's father Jaju Fernandes was all at loss when asked about the offer and said that his son has also no clue.
18-year-old Brandon had a two-week trial stint with Reading FC which ended yesterday and he is now with second division side Leicester City for another two-week trials.
"I don't have any idea how this offer of USD one million from Reading FC came about. Brandon called me up from England in the afternoon about this news and he asked me how this story had come about," Jaju Fernandes told PTI from Goa.
"Brandon has done his best at Reading trials and we have not heard anything from Reading after the two-week trials there which ended yesterday. My son is now at Leicester City for another two-week trials. So we are having out fingers crossed and hoping for the best," said Fernandes, a former Goa Football Association Executive Committee member.
The youngster trained with the Reading U-21 squad and played one practice game behind close doors where he assisted two of the three goals scored.
Brandon, who had represented India in all the age group levels, had come to prominence in Salgaocar FC colours during the Manchester United Soccer Skills Competition in 2009. He impressed the scouts from ASD Cape Town FC who watched the competition.
Brandon joined ASD Cape Town FC in 2010 and now plays in the South African Under-19 league.