Aston Villa may have done all they can to try and persuade Carney Chukwuemeka to stay at the club, Gabriel Agbonlahor has said.
However, The Athletic‘s Gregg Evans reported earlier this month that the teenager would wait until the end of the current campaign before making a decision on his future. The journalist also revealed that other clubs were interested in the youngster and had indicated that they could give him more playing time.
Agbonlahor is concerned that Villa’s ‘best’ efforts may not be enough to persuade Chukwuemeka to commit his future to the club.
The talkSPORT pundit and former Villa striker told Football Insider: “Aston Villa are probably in a position where they have offered the best contract they feel they can offer.
“Sometimes it comes down to the player, if the player and his agent don’t want to sign that contract there is not much more than the club can do.
“I’m sure Villa will have done their best. They want to keep him hungry as well. They don’t want to give him too much too soon.”
Come the summer, Chukwuemeka will apparently reflect on the number of minutes he was given in 2021/22 as he mulls over the contract offer from his club.
So far, that number stands at just 188 in the Premier League, comprising one start and eight substitute appearances. Has he shown enough to deserve more playing time?
When Gerrard gave him half an hour to impress in the 3-3 draw against Leeds last month, the 18-year-old did win five of his eight duels, but he also made an error directly leading to an opportunity for the visitors (via SofaScore).
Still, it’s worth stressing that he is the third-youngest player to feature in this season’s Premier League, and it would be a bitter blow for Villa to lose someone who could go on to be ‘an absolute star‘, in the words of Sky Sports’ Paul Merson, who also marvelled at the way in which the ‘outstanding’ Chukwuemeka ‘glides across the pitch’.
The 18-year-old’s talent is there for all to see, but the burning question is whether or not he sees his future at Villa Park.
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