Turkey Super Lig champions Galatasaray announced today that young Everton forward Henry Onyekuru will join them on a season-long loan deal for 2018-19.
A few days ago the Turkish side confirmed they were pursuing the youngster’s signature and welcomed the player to their training camp in Switzerland today. Galatasaray won the Turkish Super Lig last season, finishing three points clear of Fenerbahce and Istanbul Basaksehir. This gets them straight through to the Champions League group stage, where Onyekuru played last season as well with Anderlecht.
Onyekuru was insistent that if he was not getting a work permit to play in England, he would not return to Anderlecht. A knee injury put paid to his chances of playing in the World Cup with Nigeria. The forward had recovered and was training with the Anderlecht youth side with over a month left in the season, but was convinced that despite being ready to play and stake a claim for the Super Eagles squad, manager Hein Vanhaezebrouck.
It didn’t end there though, with Onyekuru claiming that Anderlecht wanted him back for next season, and him playing at the World Cup would likely expedite his work permit to play in the Premier League. With that not working out, the Blues appear happy to send him to Turkey.
While the Super Lig itself is not considered one of the top five leagues on the continent, the competition level plus playing in Europe might be better for him than staying in Belgium. Yannick Bolasie is also garnering interest from Turkey, and with RB Leipzig ramping up conversations for Ademola Lookman, Everton will have to make some decisions on what they want to do on the left wing.
As far as the points structure goes, he would need four or more points to get the work permit (Click here for more details) -
If he plays in 30% of their minutes in the Champions League he gets a point, 30% of their minutes in the Turkish league gets him another. He needs to then play for Nigeria or them get to the semi finals of the AFCON for another. Onyekuru would qualify for the transfer fees and wages points as well depending on what the percentiles are.
If a player scores at least five points under both the Part A and Part B criteria, the Panel may grant a GBE, but is under no obligation to do so. If a player scores fewer than five points, the Panel should refuse a GBE unless they are satisfied, through a subjective review, that the player is internationally established at the highest level and that he will make a significant contribution to the development of football at the highest level in the UK.