Arsenal are being linked with Villarreal attacker Samuel Chukwueze after Gunners cult hero and Yellow Submarine ace Santi Cazorla confirmed that the Emirates Stadium side have been in touch regarding the 20-year-old.
Cazorla, who left Arsenal after six years to return to Villarreal in 2018, plays alongside Nigeria international Chukwueze and Spain international Pau Torres, both of whom are believed to be on the Gunners’ radar.
Spanish outlet Marca asked the veteran playmaker if he gets many calls from England regarding the duo and he replied: “Yes, friends from Arsenal especially.
“They ask me about them and think they can make the jump to the Premiership tomorrow. It’s good that great teams are interested in young players from Villarreal, but for the moment I tell them to leave them alone here.”
Chukwueze has been progressing nicely at Villarreal in recent months, with 26 appearances in all competitions this term yielding four goals and four assists, plus 12 caps for Nigeria and two goals.
Last season, meanwhile, he registered double figures for the club, making 47 appearances between the senior team and the B team, with 10 goals and four assists.
Interestingly, Arsenal could have reportedly snapped Chukwueze up for just £4 million back in 2015, months after Nigeria’s victory at the Under-17 World Cup; the player – at the time part of the Diamond Football Academy, even “spent time at the Emirates”, according to Guardian Nigeria.
The move ended up falling through as Arsenal reportedly spurned the chance following disagreement on the £4 million deal, and Chukwuele ended up joining Villarreal, now valued at £60 million by the La Liga club, according to the Daily Mail.