Striker Gozie Ugwu gets second shot at Plymouth Argyle
NEW ARGYLE recruit Gozie Ugwu has revealed he could have signed on loan for the League Two club last season.
Former Pilgrims boss Carl Fletcher wanted to add the promising young striker to his squad at Home Park.
The deal did not materialise, however, and Ugwu had a loan spell at Football Conference club Ebbsfleet United instead towards the end of the campaign.
Ugwu was then borrowed by League One outfit Yeovil Town for five months at the start of this season.
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He made five starts and 13 substitute appearances for Yeovil, and scored three goals, in a stint which was disrupted by a hamstring injury.
Ugwu, 19, has now returned to full fitness and is eager to get among the goals for the Pilgrims as they fight to stay in the Football League.
He has signed on a one-month 'youth loan' from Reading, which will take him up to and including the visit of Oxford United – his hometown club – on February 16.
Ugwu told Herald Sport: "I first heard about it a few days ago. I want to play league games and it seemed like a good move for me. I'm looking forward to it.
"Plymouth did want me on loan last season but I don't know what happened with that."
Ugwu scored three goals in 12 games for Yeovil, including a double in a 2-1 home win against Doncaster Rovers on September 1, before he was sidelined by a hamstring injury.
He made a further six appearances after his recovery in mid-November but did not add to his goal tally.
His last outing for the Glovers came as a late substitute in a 3-0 victory over visiting Leyton Orient on New Year's Day.
Ugwu said: "Coming back from a hamstring injury can always be a bit iffy, but I feel good now and back to full fitness, I would say.
"It did come to a bit of a halt (at Yeovil) but I got over that barrier."
Ugwu has been with Reading since the age of 13 and has yet to play for them at first team level.
However, he was an unused substitute in the Royals' 3-1 win at Crawley Town in the FA Cup third round on January 5.
Ugwu said: "I was on the bench, which was good. Unfortunately, I didn't get on, but hopefully next time.
"It was a step in the right direction, which is what I want anyway.
"It's a great set-up at Reading and everyone is really close, from the staff to the players. It's a good club to be at."
Ugwu trained with his new Argyle team-mates for the first time yesterday. He will wear the number 18 shirt during his time at the club.
He said: "I have not been here (to Plymouth) before. I don't know much about the city but I do know it's a big club.
"It has got great history, a very nice stadium and the fans are good."
Ugwu did get some advice on Argyle, and the city, from Reading's up-and-coming Plymouth-born defender Sean Morrison.
The 22-year-old was part of the Pilgrims' centre of excellence but was not offered a contract as an apprentice.
Instead, he was snapped up by Swindon Town and moved to Reading in January 2011.
Morrison has made seven Premier League starts for the Royals this season and scored two goals, including one in a 4-3 home defeat by Manchester United in December. Ugwu said: "I spoke to Morro just before I came down here. He told me it was a nice city and he thought I would do well.
"He has kind of taken the same route that I'm trying to take, by going on loan and playing at different teams.
"Look where he is now, playing in the Premier League and scoring goals."
Ugwu was highly recommended to recently-appointed Argyle manager John Sheridan and the teenage prospect is keen to learn from him.
"He had a great career himself so I think he's looking to bring that experience to young players like myself," said Ugwu.