Kelechi Nwakali

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Kelechi Nwakali
Personal information
Full name Kelechi Nwakali
Date of birth (1998-06-05) 5 June 1998 (age 21)
Place of birth Owerri, Nigeria
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Huesca
Number 25
Youth career
Diamond Football Academy
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2016–2019 Arsenal 0 (0)
2016–2017MVV Maastricht (loan) 29 (2)
2017VVV-Venlo (loan) 9 (1)
2018MVV Maastricht (loan) 16 (4)
2018–2019Porto B (loan) 16 (0)
2019– Huesca 0 (0)
National team
2015 Nigeria U17 7 (3)
2016– Nigeria U20 4 (0)
2018– Nigeria 1 (1)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 May 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 7 July 2018

Kelechi Nwakali (born 5 June 1998) is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Spanish club SD Huesca.

Club career[edit]

Arsenal[edit]

Nwakali started his career at the Diamond Football Academy and after his performances at the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup, in which he won the Golden Ball Award,[1] he signed with English Premier League side Arsenal.[2]

MVV Maastricht (loan)[edit]

On 16 September 2016 it was announced that Nwakali had signed for Eerste Divisie side MVV Maastricht on loan for the season.[3] He then made his professional debut for the side the same day against Jong Ajax. He came on as a 92nd-minute substitute for Thomas Verheijdt as MVV won 1–0.[4]

VVV-Venlo (loan)[edit]

On 29 August 2017, Nwakali joined Dutch side VVV-Venlo on loan for the first 6 months of the 2017–18 Eredivisie season.[5] On 10 September 2017 Nwakali scored on his Eredivisie debut against FC Groningen, scoring a stoppage time equaliser in a 1-1 draw. After the initial 6-month loan deal expired, Nwakali elected to leave Venlo and return to MVV Maastricht for the second half of the season.[5]

Return to MVV Maastricht (loan)[edit]

On 24 January 2018, Nwakali returned to Maastricht on loan for the second half of the 2017-2018 Eerste Divisie season, having played just 380 minutes of Eredivisie football with Venlo.[citation needed]

Porto B (loan)[edit]

Nwakali signed on loan for FC Porto on 18 July 2018, and was assigned to Porto B ahead of the 2018-19 LigaPro season.

In March 2019 he was stuck in Nigeria due to issues with his visa.[6]

Huesca[edit]

On 2 September 2019, Nwakali joined Spanish Segunda División side SD Huesca on a three-year deal.[7] After leaving the club he thanked Arsenal for his time with them, despite not making a first-team appearance.[8]

International career[edit]

Nwakali was named to the provisional squad for the Nigeria U17 side before the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup but did not make the final squad.[1] However, coming into the 2015 U-17 World Cup he was named captain as he led his country to the title, winning the Golden Ball Award along the way.[1]

Career statistics[edit]

As of match played 22 April 2019 [9]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League Domestic Cup League Cup Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
MVV Maastricht (loan) 2016–17 Eerste Divisie 29 2 1 0 0 0 4[a] 1 34 3
VVV Venlo (loan) 2017–18 Eredivisie 9 1 2 0 0 0 11 1
MVV Maastricht (loan) 2017–18 Eerste Divisie 16 4 0 0 0 0 2[a] 0 18 4
Porto B (loan) 2018–19 LigaPro 16 0 0 0 0 0 16 0
Career total 70 7 3 0 0 0 6 1 79 8
  1. ^ a b Appearances in the Eerste Divisie promotion play-offs

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Osimhen and Nigeria the big winners". FIFA. 9 November 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  2. ^ "Kelechi Nwakali completes Arsenal move with five-year deal". ESPN FC. 5 August 2016. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  3. ^ "Arsenal's Kelechi Nwakali joins MVV Maastricht on loan for season". ESPN FC. 16 September 2016. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  4. ^ "MVV 1-0 Jong Ajax". Soccerway.
  5. ^ a b Einchcomb, Jamie (27 January 2018). "Nwakali not recalled but rejected VVV Venlo loan extension".
  6. ^ Okeleji, Oluwashina (22 April 2019). "Nigeria Football Federation helping Kelechi Nwakali sort visa issue". BBC Sport. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  7. ^ "Kelechi Nwakali, talento joven y versatilidad" [Kelechi Nwakali, young talent and versatility] (in Spanish). SD Huesca. 2 September 2019. Retrieved 3 September 2019.
  8. ^ "Kelechi Nwakali: Nigerian thanks Arsenal despite no appearances". 3 September 2019 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
  9. ^ Kelechi Nwakali at Soccerway. Retrieved 4 October 2017.

External links[edit]