The transfer of Henry Onyekuru has been nothing if not frustrating.
A first Arsenal had a bid accepted, then they hadn’t, then the player said Arsenal had submitted a bid before West Ham became the favourites for his signature after the player said he would only move to a club where he would get guaranteed first team minutes.
Now, it’s being reported that the forward has secured a visa. According to SCORENigeria, a source told them, “Henry has been in Paris, he is there with his agents.
“He has been granted his visa to UK and he is now studying all the offers and possibilities with his handlers.
“His first choice is a Premier League club.”
After an impressive series of performances, Onyekuru caught the eye of some of the biggest clubs in Europe, and Arsenal stepped in with an offer of just under £7m – enough to trigger his release clause.
Work permit issues, however, means that a bid of £7.87m could be required and this is the amount West Ham and Arsenal have reportedly been told to pay.
Onyekuru joined KAS Eupen in 2015 and helped the club secure promotion in his first season. The then-18-year-old Nigerian made 19 appearances and scored six goals with two assists.
Last season, he played more and showed glimpses of his talent, looking very promising.
A talented winger, he played in 41 games across all competitions and scored a remarkable 24 goals with nine assists for his teammates.
Onyekuru has a contract with KAS Eupen until 2020 but it’s most unlikely he’ll stay there much longer.
The release clause in his contract is believed to £6.8 million and this doesn’t represent any real challenge for clubs like Arsenal or West Ham.
He has plenty of work ahead of him as he doesn’t seem ready for the Premier League just yet. He needs to work on his physical strength as a priority before he finds out what it’s like to be hammered by a Premier League centre-back.
It would be a hard transition from Belgian football to English, but the youngster looks very capable of doing that in the near future.
Given that Onyekuru has said that he will only go somewhere he is guaranteed regular playing time, West Ham would certainly seem to be his best option.
His isn’t a name that will get fans at the Emirates excited, something that’s hardly his fault, but a move to West Ham would seem to be best for all concerned.