- Samuel Chukwueze was blamed for failing to defend as Villarreal lost their first game of the La Liga season
- The Nigerian international came on as a second-half substitute but was caught ball-watching
- Unai Emery seems unimpressed with the Nigerian for allowing Rodri to score the winner but admitted he has quality
The manager of Spanish club Villarreal, Unai Emery, has disclosed that Nigeria’s Samuel Chukwueze has a lot of quality.
The winger was a second-half substitute as Villarreal suffered their first loss of the season in the hands of Real Betis.
Chukwueze was fingered for costing his side the game as he was caught ball-watching as Rodri stole in at the back post to bundle home Betis’ winner in the 61st minute.
And Emery was utterly upset with the Nigerian as it was the first time his side will concede a goal this season.
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The former manager of English Premier League club Arsenal stated that his technical crew has been working on helping Chukwueze improve his defensive awareness.
Speaking to the press after the encounter, Emery said as per Soccernet:
“Chukwueze has quality, and we are working on improving his defensive performance. He has lacked the two meters necessary to defend from post to post.”
The defeat to Real Betis is Villarreal’s first of the season and their first loss in all competitions since May 15 (1-2 to Real Sociedad).
Nwakali ends goal drought
The visitors opened the scoring as early as the 12th minute of the encounter when Giuliano Simeone hit the net to silence the entire crowd.
Heartbreak as impressive Super Eagles striker out for the season after suffering torn anterior ligament
It was Nwakali who pulled his side back into the game with a sublime finish from outside the area, but his side will eventually concede another goal as Simeone scored what turned out to be the winner for Zaragoza.
Saddiq Umar ruled out for rest of the season
Sports Brief earlier reported that there are fears that Super Eagles striker Sadiq Umar could be out for the rest of the season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee.
Umar was in action for Real Sociedad in their 2-1 loss to Getafe on Sunday night, but he could not complete the first half of the encounter due to injury.
The former Almeria star underwent medical examinations on Monday, and the coach of the club Imanol Alguacil expressed concerns over the striker’s situation as he could be sidelined for some time.