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'Chukwueze needs to score more goals' – Eto’o calls for Villarreal winger to step up

2:00 PM EDT 3/12/20
Samuel Chukwueze - Villarreal
The Barcelona legend claims the 20-year-old is a star in the making; nonetheless, he must do more in front of goal

Samuel Eto’o has described Villarreal’s Samuel Chukwueze as an incredible player but wants him to work on his goalscoring abilities.

Chukwueze was snapped up by the Spanish top-flight team from Diamond Football Academy thanks to his impressive outing where he helped Nigeria win the 2017 Fifa U17 World Cup in Chile.

There, he was named third-best player behind Johannes Eggestein and compatriot Victor Osimhen.

Having impressed for Villarreal’s reserves in the third tier, he was promoted to the senior team – making his debut in a Europa League game against Rangers – as manager Javi Calleja brought him in as a 79th-minute replacement for Nicola Sansone.

He made his league debut on November 5, 2018, playing every minute in a 1-1 draw against Levante. Since then, he has been a regular in the Yellow Submarine setup - while accentuating his importance to the team with eye-catching performances which got him among last year’s Golden Boy 40-man shortlist and also earned him a call-up to Nigeria’s senior national team.

The 20-year-old was part of Gernot Rohr’s Super Eagles team that finished third at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations – scoring his maiden goal in the 2-1 defeat of South Africa in the quarter-finals.

When asked about what the future holds for the in-demand player, the four-time African Player of the Year underlined the Nigerian's quality but tasked him to step up in terms of scoring goals.

“He is an incredible player who is growing in leaps and bounds and it’s just a matter of time,” Eto’o told Goal.

“He is a quality player and he needs to score more goals, but he has the quality and ability to be more than just a goalscoring forward. Once he gets all of that he will be top.”

Chukwueze has recorded three goals in 26 La Liga appearances for Villarreal this season, with his latest strike coming in a 3-1 home defeat against Celta Vigo in November 2019.

Although he is reportedly attracting plenty of admirers across Europe, the Nigeria international would be hoping to help Calleja’s men end the season well in the Spanish top-flight.

Currently, they are placed eighth in the log after accruing 38 points from 27 league outings.