West Ham are one of a number of clubs who are reportedly interested in young Nigerian winger Henry Onyekuru and the club are thought to be ready to table a second bid. Having impressed in the Belgian top division with Eupen last season, the 20 year-old forward has attracted interest from Arsenal and Newcastle but it is the Hammers who seem to be making the first moves. They are reportedly very interested in the youngster and have already had a bid rejected. With competition to sign his signature the club will have to act quickly to meet Eupen’s, and Onyekuru’s expectations in order to bring him to the London Stadium.
So what can fans expect if he does decide to sign? The forward scored 22 goals in 41 appearances last season as Eupen finished 13th in the regular season but missed out on European football in the playoffs. Onyekuru ended the season strongly scoring 11 goals in the final 10 games and alerting some of Europe’s top clubs of his ability. He was joint top scorer in the league but lost out on the prize due to Anderlecht’s Teodorczyk scoring more away goals. He was mainly deployed on the left wing but can operate on either flank or, given his eye for goal, as a striker. This season he has shown himself to be skillful, strong and a direct runner able to set up a quick counter attack for his side. With this style of play he could fit well with the current Premier League style of play.
It is understood that the Nigerian international is likely to favour a move to the Premier League after already dismissing links to the major Belgian clubs Anderlecht and Brugge. The size of West Ham’s first bid is not known but the player has a release clause of £6.8 million on his contract. If he can replicate any of his form from last season then it will be a small price to pay. It is difficult to see if his form in Belgium will translate to the Premier League but he did impress against some of the bigger sides in the league. With goals against Gent, who knocked Tottenham out of the Europa League and Club Brugge who were in Leicester’s Champions League group, he has show some promise at a high level.
It is not yet certain where Onyekuru will be playing next season but if West Ham can seal a deal for him they will be getting a player with the ability to change games and the potential to become a world class winger.