Villarreal winger Samuel Chukwueze has made it clear regular first team football is a must amid interest from Premier League clubs Liverpool, Everton and Wolverhampton Wanderers, speaking to This Day Live.
If the young winger is to realise the potential that had Samuel Eto’o raving about an “incredible” talent, he knows wasting away on the bench isn’t an option.
90Min reports Everton, Leicester, Wolves and Premier League champions Liverpool are all interested in Chukwueze, with the January transfer window just six weeks away.
But, when asked about the possibility of a move to England this winter, the 21-year-old made it clear he needs to play at a club where he would be a guaranteed starter.
With Xherdan Shaqiri and Takumi Minamino struggling for game time at Anfield and Adama Traore finding himself stuck on the sidelines at Wolves, this feels like the wrong time for Chukwueze to leave Spanish football behind.
“Villarreal is my home and it’s just like a family for me there. It depends on the offer that comes from England but the most important thing is (being at a club where) I will be able to play week in, week out,” says a left-footed right-winger likened to the legendary Arjen Robben.
And Chukwueze isn’t prepared to accept any old offer.
“It will be like: ‘Samuel, we are giving you a good offer and you’re gonna be playing week in, week out’ except if I have an injury or maybe I’m not fit,” he said.
“But if I’m fit, I will have to play. That’s a condition.”
James Rodriguez has made the right-hand role his own at Everton since arriving from Real Madrid. At Leicester City, meanwhile, Cengiz Under is starting to make a real impression on loan from Roma with a couple of lovely assists for Jamie Vardy.
So it’s hard to imagine Chukwueze saying yes to any of his Premier League suitors in January.
And the Nigeria international would be more than happy to stay in Spain for the time being. Unai Emery’s Villarreal are second in La Liga and Chukwueze thinks a title challenge – or Champions League qualification – is a genuine possibility this term.
90Min adds Chukwueze has an £80 million release clause in his contract and Villarreal don’t want to sell on the cheap.