We are delighted to announce that we’ve completed our eighth summer signing with highly-rated forward Dapo Mebude joining us on loan from Watford.
The 20-year-old has earned a reputation as a real attacking talent, making his debut for Rangers after progressing through the ranks, and earning Scotland international youth honours along the way.
That resulted in Premier League new boys Watford winning the race for his signature last month, and Mark Robinson has managed to beat off competition from other League One clubs after it was decided to make him available for loan. Dapo has joined us on a season-long loan deal and he will wear the number 16 for the Dons.
Our first-team coach Rob Tuvey said: “From everything we’ve seen of Dapo so far, he’s a very talented young man, a very exciting player. He’s someone who loves to play off the shoulder and has got pace to burn in behind. We’ve learned too that he’s a good person, as well as a fantastic, exciting young player.
“We’re really happy with our attacking options now. We’ve got a little bit of everything. Dapo will give us that pace and can play in wide areas as well, so it gives us another area and potential for flexibility in terms of what formations we can play as well. It’s another option for us. Hopefully, Dapo can add to the quality we’ve already got in the squad.”
Dapo, who had a loan spell at Scottish Championship side Queen of the South last season, is of Nigerian descent, but he spent his early years in Peckham. After moving up to Scotland with his family at the age of 10, Dapo joined the academy at Rangers after impressing at an open Soccer Schools event.
It has been a hectic summer for Dapo with plenty of clubs interested in signing him, but he explained why Wimbledon was the right choice for him at this stage of his career.
Dapo said: “I signed for Watford last month and I did pre-season there, which was really good. I spent time with players that will be in the Premier League soon. I got a lot of minutes in pre-season, and it was challenging and good. I spoke with the Manager, the Sporting Director, and my agent. We all agreed that getting games at this stage of my career is crucial – playing week in and week out. I will leave whatever happens to the future, but I will take care of the here and now, so I’m coming here to play, to prove what I can do and give my all for the club.
“I could have stayed with Rangers, but I made the decision to leave. There were a lot of meetings with clubs here and there. It was a stressful time narrowing it down, and working out the right club for me. We spoke with Watford and we really liked what they said, so that was the destination for me.
“When I was playing at Watford, I had scouts from a couple of other League One clubs watching me. When I spoke with my agent he said that the gaffer at Wimbledon wanted to have a Zoom meeting with me. He showed me the club, how the team likes to play, and everything felt perfect: the style of play, how interested he was in me, and it was sold to me instantly. After that it wasn’t a hard decision to come here. I just want to repay his faith in me and show the club and the fans what I can do.”
Our physio Tim Maynard confirmed that Dapo is fit after suffering an injury in Watford’s pre-season friendly at Stevenage last week, but he needs more minutes on the training pitch before being included in our matchday squad.
Click on the link below to watch Dapo's first interview after joining us.