Meet New Super Eagles Invitee: Raphael Onyedika

Club Brugge midfielder Raphael Onyedika was among the players that Super Eagles head coach Jose Peseiro invited for this month’s upcoming international friendly with Algeria.

The 21-year-old’s maiden call-up for Nigeria came following his impressive performances in the last one year for the Belgian champions and Midtjylland — where he joined Club Brugge from last summer.

In this article, FootballOrbit brings you all you need to know about him.

Raphael Onyedika Nwadike was born on the 19th of April 2001 in Imo State, Nigeria.

At the age of 15, he started his playing career at the prestigious FC Ebedei Academy.

The academy is owned by Churchill Oliseh — the elder brother of former Super Eagles captain, Sunday Oliseh.

After three years with Ebedei, Onyedika secured a transfer abroad to the academy of FC Midtjylland in Denmark.

Midtjylland is an affiliate club to FC Ebedei. Onyedika joined the Danish club in 2019 shortly after his 18th birthday.

In his first full season with Midtjylland, he impressed with the club’s youth team in the U-19 Danish league and in the UEFA Youth League due to his impressive physique, speed and playing style.

His performances earned him a professional contract on the 1st of July 2020. He signed a 5-year deal running till June 2025.

To garner more experience; Onyedika was loaned out to Midtjylland’s affiliate club in the Danish 1st Division, FC Fredericia — on 19 August 2020 for the whole 2020/21 season.

The Nigerian did well on loan, playing 28 games and scoring three goals with one assist.

The season went so well that the he was included in the team of the year in the Danish 1st Division.

Raphael Onyedika returned to Midtjylland in the summer of 2021 and was promoted to the first team squad.

He made his official senior debut for Midtjylland on the 16th of July 2021 against Odense Boldklub in the Danish Superliga. He was in the starting line-up and played the whole game.

Onyedika playing for Midtjylland
Onyedika playing for Midtjylland

The youngster was fantastic throughout the 2021/22 season.

He featured in 48 matches, scored 4 goals and provided 3 assists in all competitions as Midtjylland won the Danish Cup.

Onyedika’s exploits didn’t go unnoticed as he was named as the Best Young Player in Denmark.

His performances saw him linked with a transfer in the 2022 summer transfer window but he started the new season with Midtjylland.

He played six games in the 2022/23 campaign before Club Brugge came calling……….

Club Brugge

On the 28th of August 2022, Raphael Onyedika signed a 5-year contract with Belgian champions Club Brugge in a €10m deal that runs till 2027.

So far, the youngster has played 4 matches for Brugge.

International career

On Saturday, 17th of September 2022, Onyedika got his maiden call-up for Nigeria as Super Eagles head coach Jose Peseiro included him in a 25-man squad that will play in a friendly match against Algeria in Oran.

Newly signed Ajax centre-back Calvin Bassey was also included in the squad.

Playing style

Raphael Onyedika is a versatile central midfielder who is capable of playing anywhere across midfielder or even in central defence.

The 21-year-old is skilful, fast and strong. He is also good in aerial balls.

He regards Paul Pogba as his idol due to their similar playing style.

Interestingly, Onyedika resembles Pogba.

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