Super Eagles winger Samuel Chukwueze has won the 2022/2023 LaLiga Santander African MVP Award, coming out tops after thousands of fans and some of Africa’s top football journalists voted for LaLiga’s standout African star this season.
Chukwueze had a fantastic season for the Yellow Submarine, scoring 13 goals and providing 11 assists in all competitions and playing in 37 of the 38 LaLiga Santander matches for the club, as his electric performances propelled Villarreal CF to a spot in European competition next season.
“I feel so happy to win this award,” said Chukwueze. “I’ve worked very hard this season, but I want to thank my teammates for making it possible. Without them this wouldn’t have been possible for me… and the coach [Quique Setién] too. When the coach believes in you, and gives you the confidence to play and enjoy yourself, it really motivates you.
“But I think I can still do more,” he added. “I want to continue working hard. I’m still young, so I’m still learning. This is just the beginning.”
Chukwueze edged out LaLiga Santander Mid-Season African MVP Iñaki Williams, the record-breaking Athletic Club forward who scored 10 goals in 36 LaLiga Santander matches this season, in which he set an incredible record of making 251 consecutive LaLiga apperances for the Basque side over seven seasons.
More than 30.000 fans from all across the continent and 26 African football journalists, voted for the LaLiga Santander African MVP – and it was Chukwueze who emerged as the winner.
Also in contention was last season’s inaugural LaLiga Santander African MVP Award Winner, Bounou, whose penalty shootout heroics against AS Roma led Sevilla FC to yet another UEFA Europa League title, their seventh and the Moroccan keeper’s second with the club.
But it was Chukwueze who has emerged as this seaason’s LaLiga Santander African MVP Award winner. The Nigerian international was a constant attacking threat for Villarreal CF and was back to his brilliant best after a frustrating injury layoff, his 155 dribbles in the top three in LaLiga Santander this season as he became one of the most exciting players to watch in the league.
One of Chukwueze’s standout performances this season saw him score two sensational goals in a 3-2 win against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu, which generated headlines around the world.
Chukwueze’s club teammate, Nicolas Jackson of Senegal, may not have stirred the fans or the journalist judges sufficiently this time around, but he certainly caught the imagination of the football world with his 12 LaLiga goals in his breakout season in the Spanish league.
“We would like to warmly congratulate Samuel Chukwueze for winning the 2022/2023 LaLiga Santander African MVP Award. He has been one of the stars of LaLiga for a number of years now and he is fully deserving of the LaLiga Santander African MVP Award.
“This was yet another season of fantastic performances from Africa’s elite players in LaLiga Santander, ensuring the interest in the league continues to grow rapidly amongst fans on the African continent.
“We would like to thank the thousands of football fans who voted for the LaLiga Santander African MVP and the esteemed journalists who took the time to help us determine the winner of this exciting competition which we are very proud of,” said Marcos Pelegrin, LaLiga’s Africa Managing Director.