SUPER Eagles and Villarreal forward, Samuel Chukwueze, believes his choice as one of the candidates for the best young player on the planet otherwise known as the Golden Boy Award, is a confirmation of his steady progress in European football.
Organised by Italian newspaper, Tuttosport, the annual award is handed to the best player in European football under the age of 21 over the previous calendar year.
The 20-year-old Chukwueze who is on the shortlist of 40 along with Flying Eagles midfielder Tom Dele-Bashiru, said he was more than pleased to be so honoured.
“I am so happy that I was shortlisted for the Golden Boy award,” the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup winner with Golden Eaglets said in an interview with NationSports. “I didn’t know I will be among the candidates for the Golden Boy award this year.
“I am so glad. I so happy that it has happened; it shows that I am really working hard and I will need to do more.”
The 2018 Nigeria Young Player of the Year has had an impactful season with the Yellow Submarines in the Spanish La Liga and only in July was revealed as one of the 50 youngsters to watch in world football by UEFA’s official website, with a worth of about $33 million.
Meanwhile, Chukwueze was of the view that Liverpool’s Saido Mane should have won The Best FIFA Men’s Player Award ahead of Lionel Messi.
“Well for me,I think both Messi and Mane did great thing last season and even Ronaldo too,” the precocious winger further told NationSport. “Mane just as Messi, deserves the Best Player Award but FIFA just have to give the award to one person.”
In a related development, Chukwueze said he and his teammates have nothing to be ashamed of after losing 2-1 away to Barcelona in a La Liga match on Tuesday, adding Villarreal is waxing stronger in this current dispensation.
He said: “The game against Barcelona was a very difficult away game for us because Barcelona needed to win the game especially at a time their coach (Ernesto Valverde) is under pressure.
“We really tried our best but Barcelona took their chances in the first half; we had so many chances in the second half but we didn’t take them.