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A top talent - Coyle

31 January 2017

Rovers boss Owen Coyle believes he has secured the services of a real 'talent' after bringing Lucas Joao on board from Sheffield Wednesday.

The 23-year-old Portuguese striker has joined on loan for the rest of the season and the manager is delighted to finally get his man. 

"Lucas Joao is a player that I've admired for the last couple of years and I've actually tried to get him to Blackburn Rovers already on a couple of occasions," said Coyle.

"So to be able to bring it to fruition now, we're delighted. He's a young striker, he's quick, he's strong, he's got great technical ability and he has scope to get even better.

"With that in mind, you can never have enough goalscorers at your football club and we want to make sure until the end of the season that we have that talent in that area to score us goals to try and win us games, and Lucas Joao will certainly help us to do that."

With Danny Graham, Sam Gallagher, Anthony Stokes and the returning Marvin Emnes also at his disposal, Coyle believes Joao will complement his attacking options.

"When I look at the strikers we have, they have the primary function of a striker and that's scoring goals, but they have different strengths and attributes and different qualities," added the Rovers boss.

"Lucas Joao has a lot of similarities in many ways to Sam Gallagher, but equally differentials as well.

"For me, every time I've seen him, he's really caught my eye, and the opportunity is now with Lucas to show that he's ready to try and get in that starting XI. It will be a fair fight and it's up to him to do his upmost to achieve that."

Joao scored a late leveller when Sheffield Wednesday visited Ewood Park last season - a game in which Coyle was an interested spectator - and the manager insists his performance that day only enhanced his opinion of him. 

"I was actually at that game," added Coyle, of the 2-2 draw in November 2015. "I'd come back from America and it was one of the first games I took in. 

"Lucas Joao came on at half-time and changed the game, because Blackburn had dominated the first half, but he transformed the game and actually Sheffield Wednesday were really on the front foot for a lot of that second half and that was due in huge parts to Lucas and the impact that he made.

"So that just confirmed what I knew about him - about the talent and the ability and the pace and power that he has.

"When you look at Sheffield Wednesday, they have a number of strikers and he's probably been a little bit compromised by not getting as many games as he would like, but we certainly believe in his ability and it's up to him, when he crosses that white line, as I said to the likes of Sam Gallagher and Marvin Emnes when they came in under similar conditions, they've shown the quality they have and I have no doubts that Lucas Joao will be of the same calibre."

The forward could make his Rovers debut on Wednesday night when Leeds United are the visitors to Ewood Park.

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