South Melbourne FC is excited to unveil its first signing of the mid-season transfer period, with Spanish striker Manuel Padilla Herrero joining the club on loan from new promoted Spanish La Liga side, Club Deportivo Leganes.
The 23-year-old striker simply known to his peers as “Manolo” joins SMFC following a highly successful season with Leganes’ development squad, scoring 22 goals in a dominant display. He also was part of the senior squad who have earned promotion to La Liga after finishing the league season in second position. Manolo is a fast, composed and hard-working striker, who will join us for the remainder of the 2016 season before heading back to Spain for the 2016/17 La Liga season with the Leganes first team.
Speaking to smfc.com.au, SMFC Football Director Andrew Mesourouni was excited about the new player. “We believe that Manolo will be a great fit for our club and we are happy to have another forward join our ranks. I would personally like to thank our friends in Spain for allowing this to happen, including Leganes President Victoria Pavon who has established a relationship between the clubs and personally assisted us through this signing. We would once again like to thank Morris Pagniello from SMFC Platinum Partner Genova International School of Soccer for assisting the club with such a move and further strengthening our ties in Europe. GISS has been instrumental in opening up numerous opportunities for both senior and junior players at our club, including player tours to Madrid and helping SMFC establish numerous relationships across Spain. This has also allowed our club to bring players of a high calibre to South Melbourne FC.
We would also like to thank Manolo’s player agent Lucas Marco Vicente for all his help securing the loan deal”
SMFC Senior Coach Chis Taylor was confident that Manolo could make an impact in the second half of the season. “We have signed Manolo to give us an additional option in our front third and to assist our current attacking options throughout the remaining part of the season. We look forward to seeing what he can produce in a South shirt.”