Frederic Kanoute believes the future is bright for Samuel Chukwueze but urged him to work on becoming more decisive for Villarreal.
Having impressed for the Nigeria U17 team at the 2017 Fifa U17 World Cup in Chile, the Nigerian was signed by the La Liga side from Diamond Football Academy.
Chukwueze impressed for the Yellow Submarine’s reserves in the third tier and that led to his promotion to the senior team by manager Javi Calleja.
Since making his debut in a Europa League game against Rangers – coming in as a replacement for Nicola Sansone – the youngster has been a regular in the Villarreal squad which earned him a Super Eagles call-up.
Asked about how the 21-year-old must do to justify his ratings during a LaLiga conference, the Sevilla icon underlined the importance of him getting more goals and assists as well as working very hard.
“Football entails the technical part, the physical part, tactical part and mental part as well which are very important,” Kanoute told Goal.
“And if he works very seriously and keeps a high level of discipline and work ethics, I think he is a kid that can be very impressive in the coming months and years for LaLiga.
“So all depends on him in terms of work and dedication he is going to put into his work and if he becomes a little bit more decisive – I mean scoring a bit more goals and assists.
“At the end of the day, they are going to look at his stats because it doesn’t matter if he can do three stepovers and dribble people, but if he doesn’t have an impact in the game for his team, then it’s going to be very difficult.
“He will learn that because – he is still young and an interesting player and I wish him all the best.”
Before football activities were suspended owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, Chukwueze boasted of 26 LaLiga appearances so far this term with three goals to his credit – two goals short of his personal best achieved in the 2018-19 season.
Kanoute’s sentiment was shared by African football great Samuel Eto’o during his visit to Nigeria in March.
“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.”