Villareal manager Unai Emery has heaped praise on Samuel Chukwueze after his performance last weekend.
Despite the Yellow Submarine losing 2-0 against Atletico Madrid on Sunday, the Spaniard reserved special praise for the winger who played the entire 90 minutes at the Estadio de la Ceramica.
Chukwueze recently came back from a groin injury after undergoing a successful surgery procedure. He has struggled to hit the ground running this season and has scored just one goal in the 19 appearances he has made in La Liga so far.
He was a handful for the Atletico defenders as he danced past them with the ball and almost got his name on the score sheet only to be denied by the post.
The Nigerian international never showed any sign of just recuperating from a groin injury as he brought gave his best on the day, to the delight of the former Arsenal mentor.
“We saw Samu’s return after two months without him and after solving some problems that prevented him from being comfortable on the field,” Emery said at the post-match press conference.
“He has given us certain things and we need players to widen the field for us, to be able to find the right one on one. We have been in games depending a lot on the full-backs and, moreover, without Peña and without Mario.
“So, we looked for alternatives of a control game, but we lacked certain things to be a little more complete. Today, with Samu, we have found many positive things.”
On Friday evening, Villareal travel to the Mestalla Stadium to take on Valencia as they look to get back to winning ways.
With the international break coming up, the 21-year-old will be eager to do enough to earn a call-up to the Super Eagles squad set to take on Siera Leone and Lesotho later in the month.
Chukwueze vs Atletico Madrid
Pass accuracy: 80.9%
Number of passes: 47
Key passes: 4
Dribbles completed: 4
Fouled: 5 times
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By Prince Sobayeni