Villarreal star Samuel Chukwueze has been nominated for the La Liga Player of the Month award for April.
The Nigeria international will compete with Barcelona captain Lionel Messi, Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois, and Atletico Madrid’s Angel Correa for the individual accolade.
Other contestants are Sevilla’s Fernando, Real Betis’ Claudio Bravo and Fernando Pacheco of Deportivo Alaves.
Chukwueze was in terrific for the Yellow Submarine during the month in question, scoring three goals in five Spanish elite division matches, while the 33-year-old Argentine superstar found the net on four occasions from the same number of outings.
In the 5-1 away obliteration of Levante at the Estadi Ciutat de Valencia on April 18, the 21-year-old ended his 17-game goal drought in La Liga with a brace.
With Villareal leading 2-1 following a first-half effort from Gerard Moreno and Postigo’s own goal, he stretched the visitors’ lead in the 63rd minute thanks to an assist from substitute Paco Alcacer.
Chukwueze completed his double with 15 minutes left to play after he beat goalkeeper Aitor. This time, it was Daniel Parejo who turned provider.
Against Ronald Koeman’s Barcelona on Sunday, he helped Unai Emery’s side to hit the ground running in the fixture, scoring as early as the 26th minute.
The winger opened the scoring at the Estadio de la Ceramica in a spectacular manner, dribbling past his markers before firing into the back of Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s net.
Nonetheless, Antoine Griezmann started Blaugrana’s fightback when he levelled proceedings in the 28th minute after receiving a timely assist from Oscar Mingueza.
The Frenchman then completed his brace in the 35th minute, firing home his effort after finding himself in a one-on-one situation with goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo.
The player with the highest number of votes will walk home with the individual accolade as well as succeed March winner Karim Benzema.
“He’s a very young player who has to find consistency,” Emery told the club website about Chukwueze. “We need to take steps forward with him and be demanding.
“He’s a footballer with great quality. He has a lot of talent, but he needs to improve in front of goal. Today he put in a great performance and managed to score.”