Daryl Dike opened his account in Barnsley FC’s 2-0 victory over Stoke City. The 20-year-old Oklahoma native put the match away in the 90th minute with a cool finish. He perfectly timed his run behind the back line, received the pass from Conor Chaplin at a wide angle, and slotted his shot between goalkeeper Angus Gunn’s legs.
Edmond Oklahoman Daryl Dike’s first goal in English Football pic.twitter.com/KuPy9y0ozp— Men in Blazers (@MenInBlazers) February 24, 2021
“Buzzing to get my first goal,” Dike shared on the club’s official Twitter account after the match. “[It’s] another big win. Come on, you reds!”
After two seasons at the University of Virginia, Dike was drafted by Orlando City in January of 2020 and scored eight goals in his first professional season. The MLS club loaned him to Barnsley on February 1st until June. His deal reportedly includes a $20 million purchase option with a 20% sell-on clause. He has five appearances for The Tykes, currently at eighth place in the English Championship.
Dike made his debut for the United States Men’s National Team in January’s 7-0 win over Trinidad and Tobago, entering the friendly in the 65th minute. He is considered a potential option for the upcoming 2022 World Cup roster and should have a busy summer. Gregg Berhalter is very high on the striker, stating his desire to work him.
“He is such a physical presence, and he’s a guy you need to get the ball to,” the American manager said in December. “He makes it very hard for the center-backs to play… I could imagine that when he’s on the field, we would love to get it to him in the penalty box more, either back to goal or on crosses to draw the defenders and perhaps lay off or take them on himself.”
This is sure to be the first of many goals for Dike in Europe. While the stipulations of his Barnsley contract will likely prevent the activation of the purchase option, strong play will attract the interest of other clubs. He appears to be a player on the rise, one of great interest to fans of the national team.