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Agent: Midfielder will be unveiled as Arsenal’s latest signing soon
According to the Daily Star, Kelechi Nwakali’s brother/agent has confirmed that the young midfielder will be unveiled as Arsenal’s latest signing as soon as his commitments with the Nigerian U-20′s are over.
Nwakali was strongly linked with a move to the Emirates after he impressed our scouts while leading Nigeria to victory at the Under-17 World Cup in Chile last year, with the teenager later named as the Player of the Tournament.
The newspapers then reported that a £3m deal had been agreed for Nwakali’s signature with the Diamond Football Academy in Nigeria and the youngster soon agreed terms over a five-year contract [source: Daily Star].
It looked like the deal was done when the 18-year-old posted a picture on his Facebook page last month of him standing with an Arsenal shirt with an accompanying message saying he’d completed his move to the Emirates, but there was still no official confirmation from Arsenal.
Who knows what the delay has been, perhaps we’re trying to resolve work permit issues, but Nwakali’s brother and agent, Allwell, has now confirmed that the midfielder will fly to London to be unveiled as an Arsenal player once he’s fulfilled his commitments with the Nigerian U-20 team.
Allwell is quoted as saying by the Daily Star:
“Any moment from now we will go to Arsenal, they can’t allow him go now because of the narrow victory in the [Afcon Under-20 qualifier] first leg against Sudan,”
“We can’t betray the coach (Amuneke) because he has been helping us in the past.”
So we should see Nwakali’s move formally announced any day now and he’ll become our third signing of the summer following the arrivals of Granit Xhaka and Takuma Asano.
Obviously Xhaka is the only player of the three that will have any serious impact on the first team this coming season but it’s always important to have a strong group of young players coming through.
Nwakali comes very highly-rated and is one of the best young central midfielders in African football, so let’s hope he develops in to a fine player at Arsenal over the coming years.