How ex-Manchester United speedster quickly convinced Doncaster Rovers to act fast for his signature

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Deji Sotona’s lightning pace helped convince Grant McCann to sign the former Manchester United youngster.

Speedster Sotona – a former junior sprinter who competed nationally in his native Ireland in the 60m and 100m events as a teenager – made headlines as the Red Devils’ fastest player in 2019.

A 16-year-old Sotona reportedly reached a top speed of 22.9mph, beating the previous record by 1.2 miles.

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The flying winger has shown flashes of his running ability in his first two outings for Doncaster Rovers to get supporters off their seats.

Deji Sontona gets away from a York City defender.Deji Sontona gets away from a York City defender.
Deji Sontona gets away from a York City defender.

McCann had “four or five good options” to fill his final vacancy in Doncaster’s forward line, but opted to hand Sotona a two-year contract following a short trial.

Asked what was behind his decision, McCann said: "His pace, his directness. We had one or two ready to go.

"The player I spoke about, who was at another club, was ready to go. But he (Sotona) has been really impressive since he came in.”

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Sotona has so far been used on the right of a front three but is capable of playing on the opposite flank and was deployed as a striker at United, whom he joined aged 13.

He left Manchester to join French club OGC Nice in 2020 before spending time on loan at Brentford B and Kilmarnock ahead of a short spell with Burnley’s under-21s.

McCann said: "There's a lot to do with him, but I think once we get him to the level where I think we can get him – i.e. positions to hurt people with end product – I think he's going to be a really good player for us."