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Villarreal news: Samuel, Adrian Dalmau, Nahuel, and...Battaglia?

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Atletico Madrid v Sporting CP - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final Leg One

Quick catchup as we all catch our breath after the France-Argentina match, or at least I do....

Samuel Chukwedze has indeed signed a new contract; his recission clause is €30m. He’s going to be part of the first team in preseason. Hopefully that’s enough in today’s market to let him stick around and develop with us.

Speaking of sticking around, Adrian Dalmau is not; the 24 year-old striker, who scored 11 goals for Villarreal B this season, is joining Dutch side Heracles Almelo on a free transfer. He’ll be hoping to emulate Fran Sol, who has done quite well with Willem II since joining them in 2016.

Barcelona B has decided they can do without Nahuel Leiva next season, if they had a choice. You’ll remember we sent Nahuel on a two-year loan to Real Betis in the summer of 2016, with an option to buy; last January we agreed to terminate that deal and move Nahuel to Barcelona, where he played with their B team. I don’t know if the purchase option went with him, presumably so. At any rate, Nahuel is now Villarreal property again, and for a guy referred to by some as the “next Messi”, has done little to impress. His contract with us runs one more year, but he’s unlikely to see any first-team action, and spending another year in the Segunda B isn’t likely to do much for him, is it?

I’ve also seen Ander Cantero, Villarreal B’s goalkeeper, will be allowed to leave on a free—his contract expires today.

And finally, a transfer rumor—sources in Portugal say we have offered Sporting Lisbon €8m for Rodrigo Battaglia. He’s a defensive midfielder, and one of the Sporting players who is trying to rescind his contract after ultras attacked players at their training ground. He’s a good dribbler and short passer, 26 years old and about 6’2” in height. Sporting was planning to sell him for more like €20-25m in the summer—whether or not he is now a free agent is questionable and might have to be fought out in court, so Villarreal appear to be coming in with an offer that presumably all parties could compromise on.

Of course, some might say Sporting owes us one after the Ruben Semedo fiasco. As far as I know, Semedo remains Villarreal property, suspended without pay and in jail. We have not rescinded his contract, pending the outcome of the court case against him.