Kelechi Nwakali made his first start in La Liga this weekend, and Arsenal will be watching his progress closely.
The Gunners have a buy-back clause in the contract of the Huesca midfielder, having allowed him to join the Spanish Segunda side in the summer of 2019.
Unlike our failed chase of Houssem Aouar, Arsenal will not need to win the jackpot here in order to land the young talent, but it appears unlikely that our club will be bringing Kelechi back to the club any time soon.
Nwakali confirmed the clause in an interview with ScoreNigeria previously, when admitting that it was still his ‘dream’ to return to Arsenal.
He said: “Arsenal have been my dream team, but one thing is sure, is not late yet, the aim is to just go there and get more playing time because there is a buy-back option in the contract.”
The 22 year-old clearly still hopes that he can earn a return to the Emirates, having had his previous spell with the club tarnished by a failure to obtain a work permit having arrived at the club with huge potential.
Nwakali was part of the Nigeria Under-17 World Cup winning side of 2015, where he picked up the Golden Ball Award, but was unable to obtain a work permit, and ended up leaving the club on loan for a number of seasons.
Arsenal eventually sold to Huesca, where he was still not allowed to play, but he finally retrieved a permit to play and made his debut in June of this year.
After promotion to La Liga this term, Nwakali could well make a name for himself, and Arsenal will no doubt be following his progression with a view to bringing him back should he begin to meet the potential he previously shown.
Our midfield is one which has lacked creativity in recent months, and is believed to be high on our wishlist for the upcoming January window, but whether our former youngster will come into contention alongside reported targets Aouar or even Dominik Szoboszlai remains to be seen. If I was Mikel Arteta I certainly wouldn’t be happy with just one option added, especially given our injury record over the years.
Does Nwakali’s previous spell at the club aid him in any attempt to play for our beloved club in the future? Does his record for the youths count for anything in the senior game?