Okaka: “I’m Happy To See Pereyra Again, He’s Like My Brother”
By Kevin Affleck
Stefano Okaka is looking forward to being reunited with his big pal Roberto Pereyra when the Argentina international returns to the club this weekend.
Pereyra’s extended season, lasting nearly 11 months and 43 games, only ended earlier this month as he was part of the La Albiceleste side that reached the semi-final of the Copa America. Head Coach Javi Gracia gave his chief playmaker three weeks off to recharge his batteries before summoning him back to the training base in London Colney on Saturday.
Okaka and Pereyra have struck up a real bond since they joined the club in the summer of 2016 and are regularly seen sitting around the canteen at the training ground long after everyone has gone.
“I am happy to see him again as he’s like my brother,” said Okaka who left in January to join Udinese on loan. “I saw him doing good in the Copa America and I will be waiting for him at the training ground. We are like brothers as he knows how hard it was for me one years ago with injury and a few things. And when he was injured, I did the same for him. We are close and we spend a lot of time together. He’s a funny guy and we take care of each other.”
It speaks volumes for where the club finds itself at right now that they have a player who has spent the summer training with Lionel Messi and Sergio Agüero, Angel Di Maria in their ranks. He played 37 times last season, scored eight goals and was involved in his own goal-of-the-season competition at one point.
“He’s a fantastic player,” said Okaka. “He’s a quality player and he was born to play football. Watford is lucky to have him at the club.”