Former Watford and Tottenham Hotspur defender Joy Mukena appeared to be on the verge of joining League One Sunderland earlier in December.

Joy Mukena has been unveiled by non-league Bracknell Town.

Why are we telling you this, you ask? Well, because the former Watford defender was on trial at Sunderland a week ago and seemingly impressed the staff at the Stadium of Light.

A classy 20-year-old centre-back, Mukena wore the famous red and white stripes during a 1-0 defeat to Stoke City’s U23s earlier this week. And reserve team coach Elliott Dickman was full of praise for a young defender who, after failing to make the grade at Vicarage Road, appeared well placed to earn himself a contract on Wearside.

“He’s been in for about ten days now, so we’ll have a look and a chat and see where we’re going from there,” Dickman told the Sunderland Echo.

“He’s come in and given his all. We played Spennymoor last week and he’s played in that game, so he’s had two full games. Fair play to the lad, he’s been a credit and he’s conducted himself well.”

For whatever reason, however, Sunderland soon decided against adding Mukena to their already lengthy list of centre-halves.

And a player who once turned out for Tottenham Hotspur in his youth will now be looking to take the Jamie Vardy route to the top of the English game, having dropped all the way down to the Isthmian League South Central Division with Bracknell Town.

The Robins are currently in second place in the regional, eighth tier of English football and Mukena has already made his debut, less than 24 hours after signing, against Hornchuch.

Only time will tell whether a player who came so close to joining fallen giants Sunderland has the potential to make his stay in non-league a short one.

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