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Nicolas Jackson: Chelsea sign Villarreal striker on eight-year contract

Nicolas Jackson signs eight-year contract at Chelsea; Blues have paid Villarreal slightly more than his £30.1m release clause in exchange for more favourable payment terms; the striker becomes Chelsea's second summer signing after the £52m arrival of Christopher Nkunku

Nicolas Jackson has signed an eight-year contract at Chelsea
Image: Nicolas Jackson has signed an eight-year contract at Chelsea

Chelsea have signed striker Nicolas Jackson from Villarreal.

The 22-year-old has agreed an eight-year deal at Stamford Bridge after Chelsea paid Villarreal slightly more than his £30.1m release clause in exchange for more favourable payment terms.

The Senegalese forward becomes Mauricio Pochettino's second summer signing since he took charge in May following the £52m arrival of Christopher Nkunku from RB Leipzig.

Jackson scored 12 goals and provided five assists in all competitions for Villarreal last season.

NICOLAS JACKSON

Bournemouth had agreed a deal to sign the Senegalese forward for £22.5m in January but he failed his medical with a hamstring problem.

Chelsea co-sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley said: "We are excited to welcome Nicolas to Chelsea. He is a young player with big potential, as he showcased for Villarreal last season.

"We believe he is ready for this next step in his career and look forward to him working with our new head coach, Mauricio Pochettino, and his Chelsea team-mates."

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Jackson's late season form, in what was a breakthrough campaign, earned him LaLiga player of the month in May, helping Villarreal finish fifth and qualify for the Europa League.

He also featured for Senegal at the Qatar World Cup, making his international debut in a group stage game against the Netherlands.

Jackson's 'sliding doors' moment that led to Chelsea move

Nicolas Jackson's 2022/23 league stats compared to Chelsea forward.
Image: Nicolas Jackson's league stats compared to other Chelsea forwards last season

Sliding Doors - the iconic film directed by Peter Howitt - recently celebrated its 25th anniversary.

It follows Gwyneth Paltrow's character Helen and the two paths her life could take depending on whether or not she catches a train one day.

Nicolas Jackson was still three years away from being born, but the man Mauricio Pochettino is pinning his hopes on at Chelsea has already experienced his very own Sliding Doors moment.

Bournemouth were close to signing the 22-year-old back in January from Villarreal only for the deal to collapse amid concerns over a hamstring injury he had suffered. Jackson failed a medical on the south coast.

The Cherries had indeed agreed a £21m fee but with relegation still a serious possibility, they needed as many fit players as possible and opted not to gamble on Jackson's status.

Had he moved to Bournemouth, would Jackson have predominantly played wide of Dominic Solanke, once of Chelsea? The player would shake off those concerns with a blistering end to the campaign for the Yellow Submarine.

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