West Ham United fans could be forgiven for forgetting they signed Goncalo Cardoso.
The young Portuguese defender has not had a look in at West Ham since joining on deadline day from Boavista in a deal worth £3million in the summer of 2019 (Football Insider).
Neither Manuel Pellegrini nor David Moyes have seen fit to give the 20-year-old his head in the first team.
West Ham’s forgotten man
He has quickly become a forgotten man even if he was billed as one for the future on his arrival in east London.
But so far Cardoso has failed to establish himself as a senior squad player like so many of the lottery ticket signings made during the tenure of David Sullivan and David Gold.
It appears Cardoso is rated within the West Ham walls, though.
And that has even taken the player himself by surprise.
Speaking in a rare interview with the club’s official website, Cardoso revealed he was taken aback to discover he had been made vice-captain of West Ham’s development side before this week’s Papa John’s Trophy defeat to Peterborough.
Cardoso reveals surprise after learning his standing at West Ham
“I think every one of us wants to play professional football at the highest level possible,” Cardoso told whufc.com.
“It’s (the 3-0 defeat to Peterborough) a reminder how good you need to be to play at the top level of the game. Even in League One they had a really good team and played really well, so even at this level it is difficult.
“It’s good for us to learn, keep working and understand that there is a long way for us to go to improve.
“It was nice (to be given the captain’s armband in Emmanuel Longelo’s absence),” Cardoso admitted.
‘It’s a good sign, a sign the manager trusts me’
“I didn’t know that I was the second captain, but it’s always a proud moment for me. It’s a good sign – a sign that the manager trusts me – so I was proud to wear it.”
Whether Cardoso has a long-term future in West Ham’s first team is another matter.
But as the player says himself, being appointed vice-captain of what would have been the club’s reserves in the old days, can only bode well for him.