Neal swoops for Jesse Darko on loan
Neal Ardley has today bolstered his attacking options with the loan signing of highly-rated Cardiff City forward Jesse Darko.
The 19-year-old Austrian-born talent (pictured above at the training ground with Neil Cox) , who came through the Cardiff youth system when Neal Ardley was Academy Manager at the South Wales club, has joined on an initial one-month loan.
More recently, he has developed his game under the guidance of Wimbledon favourite Kevin Cooper, who is currently coach of Cardiff’s Under-21s side, and Darko believes that it is the right time for him to go out and gain first-team experience.
Speaking to Rob Cornell on Dons Player, he said: “All season I have been trying to get out on loan and get first-team games under my belt. I am looking to do what I can for the team and help Wimbledon stay up. I worked with Neal Ardley for three years and he knows what I am like as a player. He knows that I will work hard for the team and do my best to help the club in this situation.”
Darko will link-up once again with Jonathan Meades and Kevin Sainte-Luce with all three players having come through the well regarded youth system at Cardiff.
Neal Ardley says that the addition of Darko is particularly useful at this stage of the season and he knows exactly what the player is capable of after he watched him bang the goals in at Under-21 level last season.
“Jesse came in at Cardiff Under-16s and got an apprenticeship after doing very well in his first year,” said Neal Ardley. “He kept on improving and in his second year he was promoted to the Under-21s and scored 18 goals in 29 games. Jesse is very quick, has good movement and he works incredibly hard along the front line. Importantly, he understands what I want the team to do and how I like us to press so I do not think it will take him long to fit in.”
Dons Player subscribers can now watch a full interview with Jesse Darko on our premium site.