Runaway English Premier League leaders Manchester City have signed England under-21 international winger Jack Harrison from sister Major League Soccer franchise New York City FC.
Upon signing a three-and-a-half-year contract with Pep Guardiola’s hot title favourites, 21-year-old Harrison immediately joined English Football League Championship club Middlesbrough on loan for the rest of this season.
While the Stoke-on-Trent born youngster has the future prospect of playing alongside world soccer stars such as Sergio Aguero, Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus to look forward to, it is on the banks of the River Tees where his short-term future lies.
Harrison will play at The Riverside under Tony Pulis – a coach most famous for managing his hometown club Stoke City and establishing them as a Premier League team. The mission is very different in the north east of England, however, as Boro chase promotion. At this stage, however, it looks as though it’ll have to come via the playoffs if that is to be realized.
“I can’t wait to get started over here,” Harrison told the Man City official website. “Middlesbrough are a club with Premier League experience and in the mix for the playoffs.”
Also thanking New York City head coach Patrick Vieira for the part he’s played in his development, Harrison scored ten goals and made six assists for The Big Apple outfit during the 2017 MLS season.
— Middlesbrough FC (@Boro) January 30, 2018
He’ll compete with the likes of former Chelsea player Patrick Bamford, ex-England winger Stewart Downing and Barcelona academy graduate Adama Traore for a starting place on the flanks at Boro. Middlesbrough are a good price in the betting for both a top-six finish and promotion, so punters may be tempted to sign up via Oddschecker and use some free bets on these markets.
Harrison spent seven years in Manchester United’s academy until 2010 when he took the opportunity to study in the USA. He came to the attention of New York City when playing for Manhattan Soccer Club – a youth affiliate team of theirs – after winning the 2015 Gatorade High School Player of the Year Award.
Although the number one pick made by Chicago Fire in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft, Harrison was quickly traded to New York City and made his professional debut on May 21, 2016, as a substitute in a 7-0 derby defeat by the Red Bulls. He played his first international for the England Under-21s against neighbours Scotland in October 2017.