Nigeria Under-23 defender Valentine Ozornwafor has joined Spanish Segunda Division side UD Almeria on a season-long loan from Galatasaray.
The 20-year-old centre-back joined the Turkish giants on a four-year contract from Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) side Enyimba after a breakout showing at the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Poland, where Nigeria exited at the hands of Senegal in the Round of 16.
Nigeria’s Flying Eagles kept one clean sheet in four games in the competition, with the rangy Ozornwafor excelling in aerial duels and offering a left-footed passing option from the heart of the defence.
He earned his first call-up to the senior national team in March, and has featured for the Under-23 side in a 4-0 victory over Libya in qualifying for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Ozornwafor was a part of Galatasaray’s preseason preparations, but has been allowed to move to Spain for regular playing time, which is considered crucial to his continued development. The loan deal is for a fee of 200,000 Euros, and contains an option to make the deal permanent for 1.85 million Euros, at the discretion of the Andalusian club. Galatasaray would then be entitled to 20 per cent of the profit from a future sale.