When Preston took Eyad Hammoud on trial, fans would have been forgiven for feeling a little excited.
North End’s Under-18’s took on Blackpool in April, and named two trialists in their team. Bolton defender Max Broughton was in the side, but it was Sheffield Wednesday attacker Hammoud that caused the most interest.
Hammoud had earned a burgeoning reputation with Wednesday, and his hat-trick against Burnley last season showed his potential, as seen below.
Hammoud’s reputation even saw him land a spot in The Guardian’s top 60 young talents in the world just a year ago. Hammoud was clearly highly rated, but the Owls chose not to give him him a professional deal at the end of last season.
That made Hammoud a free agent, and some wondered whether Preston would follow up their interest. Nothing came of the trial though, and Hammoud started the season without a club.
In August though, he did find a new home. Despite Preston’s interest, he has left England and found a new home with Al Ansar FC. If you’ve never heard of them, you’re more than forgiven, as they finished second in Lebanon’s top flight last season.
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Hammoud was born in Lebanon before heading to Bulgaria at a young age, and had been considered Bulgarian for much of his career. Having been on the books of Lokomotiv Plovdiv, Hammoud turned out for Bulgaria’s Under-16’s, 17’s and 18’s.
Now though, Hammoud looks set to commit to Lebanon, having turned out for their Under-20’s in August (as seen above), switching allegiance as he made his move back home.
There’s little information available about how Hammoud is faring over in Lebanon, but it’s an unexpected move for the 18-year-old. From The Guardian’s praise to a trial at Preston and now heading to a team in Lebanon, it hasn’t exactly gone to plan for Hammoud in the last year, but he has plenty of time to turn it around. Maybe one day Preston will revive their interest, but it ultimately looks unlikely now.