Nigerian forward Henry Onyekuru continued his excellent season in the Belgium Europa League by recording his 23rd goal of the year in a 2-0 win for his Eupen club over Royal Excele Mouscron. Onyekuru, who is only 19 years old, scored in the 72nd minute after what viewers called an amazing run past five Mouscron players and an excellent fake to keep Mouscorn goalkeeper Matej Delac put, unable to block Onyekuru’s shot. The goal sealed up a victory that will push Eupen into the next round of the league playoffs. Thanks to yesterday’s goal, Onyekuru is also tied with Olarewaju Kayode of Austria Wien for the top scoring Nigerian in European football. In the Belgian league, his amazing performance has earned him a nomination for the league’s Young Player of the Year Award, contending against 20-year-old Anderlecht midfielder Youri Tieleman and 19-year-old KV Oostende player Nany Dimata. That award will be presented May 22.
While Kayode has already been called up to the Nigerian national team, Onyekuru is still working towards an invitation. However, his stellar performance in Belgium has paid dividends, as he is expected to sign a contract with West Ham in the English Premier League, provided they can reach an agreement with Eupen over a transfer fee. Because it’s still unclear, representatives from Everton, West Bromwich Albion, Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough were also present at the game to scout out Onyekuru. This probably pleased Onyekuru, whose representatives have stated in the past that Onyekuru’s dream is to play in England. In January, Scottish champions Celtic had their bid rejected by Euben, but it is believed that they are also still in the hunt for Onyekuru’s services. In addition to a transfer fee, Onyekuru has a 6.8 million pound release clause in his contract that needs to be satisfied.