Rangers and West Ham United have missed out on the signing of Adrian Akande, with AllNigeriaSoccer reporting that a young winger who has been likened to Eden Hazard is set to join Swansea City instead.
And that could prove to be an inspired decision.
Teenager Akande is facing a crucial juncture in his young career and, after leaving Chelsea’s famed academy, he would have been desperate to join a club with a proven track record when it comes to giving youth a chance.
Swansea are exactly that. Academy graduates Joe Rodon and Connor Roberts are first-team regulars these days, while Ollie McBurnie sealed a £20 million move to Sheffield United after breaking through at the Liberty Stadium.
Furthermore, in Steve Cooper, the Swans have a manager who led an England side containing Phil Foden, Jadon Sancho and Callum Hudson-Odoi to glory at the U17 World Cup three years ago.
AllNigeriaSoccer claims that Steven Gerrard’s Rangers and David Moyes’ West Ham were interested, with Akande enjoying recent spells on trial at Ibrox and the London Stadium.
But it seems only a matter of time before he becomes Swansea’s first signing of the summer. And, if he lives up to comparisons with two of the most expensive wingers in the game, there could be another fresh-faced starlet honing his talents in South Wales.
”He plays like Hazard and Barcelona’s Dembele. He is two-footed, very quick and strong on the ball. He can score the same, with both right foot and left foot and he is a hard worker,” agent Tobi Alabi told ANS.
”He has no weaknesses.”