Nigerian talent Kelechi Nwakali has sealed a move to Arsenal on a five-year deal, according to his agent.
The 17-year-old was reportedly in London last month after Arsenal agreed a £3 million fee with Nigeria's Diamond Football Academy, and Nwakali's agent has now confirmed the deal is done, per Sports Day (h/t the Sun's Joe Halligan): "Kelechi has signed a five-year deal with Arsenal. I won’t be able to mention the exact transfer fee but it is above £2 million."
The report added that Bayern Munich and Manchester City were also in for the midfielder, who was crowned player of the tournament as Nigeria triumphed at the 2015 FIFA U17 World Cup in Chile.
Nwakali looks to have the potential to develop into a top-class box-to-box midfielder as he can contribute both in defence and attack, per Nigerian football journalist Colin Udoh:
Colin NOT Collins @ColinUdoh
Osimhen may be the top scorer, but Nwakali is my tournament MVP. He's the glue that's held this team together, offensively and defensively11/8/2015, 11:19:16 PM
At the Chile tournament he netted three times and provided three assists, most significantly equalising with an impressive free-kick before Nigeria went on to beat Mexico 4-2 in the semi-finals, per FIFA:
Under the watchful eye of Gunners manager Arsene Wenger, Nwakali has every chance of making good on his potential and breaking into the Arsenal side.
He is unlikely to be seen in the first team for a while yet, though.
Arsenal's central midfield areas are currently well covered by the likes of Francis Coquelin, Aaron Ramsey and Mohamed Elneny, while Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere are first-team regulars when fit.
However, if Nwakali can prove his worth in the youth ranks at the north London club, he could well advance to the senior squad within a few years.
It certainly seems that he is eager to take his chance at the Emirates, per Halligan: "I am going to Arsenal to work and try to be the best I can. With God anything is possible, to work hard to justify my claim for first-team football."
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