Samuel Chukwueze is in the form of his life and finally, many are opening their eyes to the enormous potential in the diminutive Super Eagles forward.
Since his incredible outing against Real Madrid, he has been the toast of LaLiga and the football world. His performance even got Real Madrid president Florentino Perez to directly enquire about his availability from Villarreal president Fernando Roig.
In the latest transfer news surrounding Nigerian players, we take a look at Samuel Chukwueze's potential next destination.
Chukwueze: Sort after by Europe's best
That reported discussion opened the floodgates of transfer requests and links from all across Europe. AC Milan is reportedly back in the picture and several Premier League sides, led by Aston Villa, have also made enquiries about his price.
His contract at Villarreal runs until the summer of 2024 but he has an €80 million release clause which teams can pay in the upcoming transfer window to get him out of the Valencia-based club.
Talks with Villarreal were reportedly in the works but all seems to have stalled, according to reports. It is believed that the 23-year-old, whose only foreign experience has been with the Yellow Submarine, is enticed by the idea of playing elsewhere next season. He is especially keen on a move to Real Madrid because of his admiration for Cristiano Ronaldo and a desire to replicate the career that the Portugal legend had.
There has been no reports of further discussions with Madrid beyond the initial reports, but it is believed that the club's are still in talks over a cut-price deal for the winger.
Aston Villa intend to step in thanks to Unai Emery's push for the club to sign the winger. New reports also claim that Arsenal, Liverpool and West Ham United have entered the fray for the Super Eagles forward, who could go for as low as £36 million (€40 million). This price is due to the club being unable to advance significantly in negotiations to extend his deal beyond 2024 which would make the release clause non-negotiable.
With Chukwueze spoilt for choice, where should he end up if he moves on from Villarreal in the summer?
Which club will Chukwueze join in the summer?
Real Madrid is his preferred destination for reasons already stated. The club was also reported to be considering a Chukwueze and Vinicius Junior wing attack with a striker and Rodrygo Goes as the number 10 in a Neymar-esque role. However, it is not a realistic move thanks to Los Blancos having other priorities for the summer.
It is also a move that could harm his career as he will just be another name at one of the world's biggest clubs. He could turn out like Mariano Diaz or Alvaro Odriozola – talented players who are wasting away on the bench at Real Madrid.
Arsenal is another interested club and is the best place for Chukwueze's talents among interested clubs. A healthy competition with Bukayo Saka will also help his creativity explode.
🚨 Liverpool and Arsenal are set to rival Real Madrid in the race to sign Villarreal forward Samuel Chukwueze.
His release clause is £88m but clubs believe they can sign him for less this summer because his contract runs out in 2024.
(Source: DefensaCentral) pic.twitter.com/TBCmQFinDf
— Transfer News Live (@DeadlineDayLive) April 25, 2023
He may not get as many minutes as Saka is an undisputed starter for the Gunners which will also affect his development. But the Premier League club beats Madrid in the way it handles its youngsters and non-big name players.
Aston Villa looks like the best destination thanks to the possible link up between him and a former manager who trusts him and will give him minutes in the biggest games in the most popular league in the world. This will also open him up to clubs with bigger profiles who can guarantee him season after season of title challenges.
This article was most recently revised and updated 10 months ago