Brentford sign former Spain Under-21 goalkeeper on loan
Álvaro Fernández in action against Barcelona for SD Huesca in January 2021. | Photo by Pressinphoto/Icon Sport via Getty Images. 

Brentford have announced the signing of SD Huesca goalkeeper Álvaro Fernández on a one-year loan with an option to buy at the end of the 2021/22 season. 

The 23-year-old adds to the club's Spanish goalkeeping contingent of David Raya and goalkeeper coach Manu Sotelo, and will provide additional competition for the starting spot alongside Patrik Gunnarsson.  

Fernández arrives having recently played an important role for Spain in the 2021 European Under-21 Championship - conceding just twice in five appearances as Spain reached the semi-finals. He captained Luis de la Fuente's side twice during the tournament and kept three clean sheets in the group phase. 

De la Fuente added to his summer schedule by calling him up for Spain's squad for the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics. However, he watched on primarily from the bench as Spain earned a silver medal after losing 2-1 to Brazil in extra-time. 

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Thomas Frank has described Fernández as a goalkeeper with 'huge potential' and is delighted by his arrival. 

"Álvaro is a player with huge potential, and we are very pleased that he has come in to our squad and our goalkeeper unit.

"He will come here and compete every day with David Raya and Patrik Gunnarsson. This is a signing that make us stronger as a group and will help push us to a higher level."

The shot-stopper helped Huesca earn promotion to La Liga in 2019/20, keeping a clean sheet in a third of his appearances (12 in 36) and conceding just 35 goals en route to the title. 

In 2020/21 he started 22 times for the newly-promoted club, including narrow defeats to Barcelona (0-1), Real Madrid (1-2), and Atlético Madrid (2-0), shutting out the opposition on five occasions, three of which came in the final five matches, as Huesca narrowly missed out on survival by two points. 

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Sotelo has outlined what the new arrival can provide Brentford. 

"Álvaro is a young keeper who has already produced brilliant performances in La Liga, standing out as a shot stopper and with his positioning, especially dealing with through balls and crosses. He is comfortable with the ball at his feet, which fits with our model."