Samuel Chukwueze has been Nigeria’s biggest star in the Spanish La Liga over the past few years.
Last season was Chukwueze’s most productive for Villarreal, with the Super Eagles winger scoring 13 goals and adding 11 assists in all conditions for the Submarines.
However, AC Milan snatched him away earlier this summer in a deal that could make Villarreal €28 million richer.
With Chukwueze’s departure from Spain, it appeared that Nigerian fans would have only Real Sociedad’s Umar Sadiq to pour all their affection and attention on in La Liga this season.
But in steps youngster Samuel “Samu” Omorodion Aghehowa, announcing his arrival to La Liga in the biggest way possible.
Who is Samu Omorodion Aghehowa?
Omorodion was born on 5 May 2004 in Melilla, Spain, to parents of Nigerian descent.
His journey in the football world started at a young age when he moved to Maracena, Granada, Andalusia. It was here that he began his formative years, crafting the skills that would propel him to prominence.
The youngster spent three years at Nervión football academy before he joined Granada CF’s youth setup in 2021.
Omorodion became a key member of Granada B ahead of last season, and he went on to tear the Segunda División Rfef apart with several stunning performances.
He featured in 33 games and scored 18 goals to finish as the division’s top goalscorer.
Step up to La Liga
Granada knew they had a gem in their fold, and in April, the club extended the gifted forward’s contract until 2028.
And after the club gained promotion to La Liga from the Segunda Division, Omorodion was asked to start training with the first team.
Despite just turning 19 a few months ago, Granada’s first team coach Paco López was convinced that the teenager was ready for the Primeira Division.
And in Granada’s first game back in the top flight, López handed Omorodion a surprise spot in the starting eleven away to no other than title contenders Atletico Madrid.
Against Atletico’s three-man defence led by former Chelsea skipper César Azpilicueta, Omorodion led the forward line brilliantly for Granada.
It did not take long before the home team’s defenders realise that Omorodion, standing tall at an impressive 1.93 meters, is not one to be easily bullied despite his tender years.
Mario Hermoso picked up a yellow card while battling with Omorodion in the first half. And 32-year-old Stefan Savić would have had a nightmare after his endless battle with the youngster.
Omorodion crowned his all-round brilliance with his first La Liga goal in the 62nd minute after he got the better of Savić before getting on the end of Gonzalo Villar’s cross to direct the ball past goalkeeper Oblak.
It was the equaliser for Granada as Álvaro Morata had given Atletico a first-half lead.
The home side would later win the tie 3-1 courtesy of further goals from Depay and Marcos Llorente.
But Omorodion had made a huge statement and had given thousands of Granada fans in and outside the Estádio Cívitas Metropolitano reasons to be optimistic this season.
Granada’s new number 29 will be hard to stop in La Liga.
Though a Spain youth international, Omorodion remains eligible to play for the Super Eagles.
And with Chukwueze’s departure to Serie A and Sadiq slowly getting back to his best after his injury setback, Omorodion looks set to give Nigerian fans a lot to cheer in the Spanish top flight over the 2023/24 campaign.
Go get them, Samu!