Leon Balogun

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Leon Balogun
Leon Balogun-Nigeria.jpg
Balogun playing for Nigeria in 2017
Personal information
Full name Leon Aderemi Balogun[1]
Date of birth (1988-06-28) 28 June 1988 (age 30)
Place of birth West Berlin, West Germany
Height 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)[2]
Playing position Defender
Club information
Current team
Brighton & Hove Albion
Number 14
Youth career
Hertha BSC
0000–2007 Hertha Zehlendorf
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2007–2008 Türkiyemspor Berlin 29 (4)
2008–2010 Hannover 96 II 34 (1)
2008–2010 Hannover 96 3 (0)
2010–2012 Werder Bremen II 49 (4)
2010–2012 Werder Bremen 3 (0)
2012–2014 Fortuna Düsseldorf 28 (0)
2012–2014 Fortuna Düsseldorf II 4 (1)
2014–2015 Darmstadt 98 21 (4)
2015–2018 Mainz 05 52 (1)
2017 Mainz 05 II 1 (0)
2018– Brighton & Hove Albion 2 (0)
National team
2014– Nigeria 23 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 25 August 2018
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 8 September 2018

Leon Aderemi Balogun (born 28 June 1988) is a German-Nigerian professional footballer who plays as a defender for Premier League club Brighton & Hove Albion.

Club career[edit]

He made his Bundesliga debut on 19 April 2009 for Hannover 96 in a game against Hamburger SV.[3]

After his contract with 2. Bundesliga side Fortuna Düsseldorf had been expired in summer 2014, he was without a club for three months until he joined fellow leaguer Darmstadt 98. He signed a contract until the end of the 2014–15 season.[4]

Brighton & Hove Albion[edit]

On 22 May 2018, Balogun signed a two-year deal with Premier League club Brighton & Hove Albion.[5]

Balogun made his competitive debut for the Sussex club coming on as a early substitute against Manchester United replacing injured Lewis Dunk. The Seagulls went on to beat United 3-2 at The Amex.[6]

International career[edit]

Balogun with Nigeria against Iceland at the 2018 FIFA World Cup

Born to a Nigerian father and German mother, Balogun was called up by Nigeria for a March 2014 friendly against Mexico as a replacement for Joseph Yobo.[7] Balogun entered at the half, but was injured after 20 minutes in a collision with signage on the touchline. He fractured his foot and was to miss 2–3 months after surgery. However, he later confirmed to news media that his injury did not require surgery.[8][9]

On 25 March 2015, he played his second game for Nigeria in a 1–0 loss against Uganda. He played his third game for the country on 13 June 2015 when he featured in a 2–0 win over Chad in the opening game of qualifying for the 2017 African Nations Cup.

In June 2018, he was named in Nigeria’s final 23-man squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.[10]

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of 25 August 2018[11]
Club Season League Cup League Cup Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Hannover 96 II 2008–09 Regionalliga Nord 21 1 21 1
2009–10 Regionalliga Nord 16 0 16 0
Total 37 1 37 1
Hannover 96 2008–09 Bundesliga 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
2009–10 Bundesliga 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
Total 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
Werder Bremen II 2010–11 3. Liga 29 1 29 1
2011–12 3. Liga 20 3 20 3
Total 49 4 49 4
Werder Bremen 2010–11 Bundesliga 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
2011–12 Bundesliga 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
Fortuna Düsseldorf II 2012–13 Regionalliga West 2 1 2 1
2013–14 Regionalliga West 2 0 2 0
Total 4 1 4 1
Fortuna Düsseldorf 2012–13 Bundesliga 17 0 1 0 0 0 18 0
2013–14 2. Bundesliga 11 0 1 0 0 0 12 0
Total 28 0 2 0 0 0 30 0
Darmstadt 98 2014–15 2. Bundesliga 21 4 0 0 0 0 21 4
Mainz 05 2015–16 Bundesliga 21 1 2 0 0 0 18 0
2016–17 Bundesliga 17 0 1 0 2[a] 0 20 0
2017–18 Bundesliga 14 0 1 0 0 0 15 0
Total 52 1 4 0 2 0 58 1
Mainz 05 II 2016–17 3. Liga 1 0 1 0
Brighton & Hove Albion 2018–19 Premier League 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
Career total 200 11 6 0 0 0 2 0 208 11
  1. ^ 2 appearances, 0 goals in UEFA Europa League

International[edit]

Statistics accurate as of match played 8 September 2018.[12]
Nigeria
Year Apps Goals
2014 1 0
2015 5 0
2016 3 0
2017 6 0
2018 8 0
Total 23 0

Personal life[edit]

Balogun was born to a Nigerian-Yoruba father and a German mother. Balogun was raised Roman Catholic and sent to Catholic school from a young age, but he resent his strict upbringing and became an Atheist in his formative years. However during the hardships of early footballing career Balogun started believing in God again and is now a devout Christian.[13][14] Balogun speaks fluent English and German, but does not speak Yoruba, the language of his father as his parents tried to assimilate him in German culture.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2018/19 Premier League squads confirmed". Premier League. 3 September 2018. Retrieved 4 September 2018. 
  2. ^ "2018 FIFA World Cup Russia – List of Players" (PDF). FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 4 June 2018. Retrieved 19 June 2018. 
  3. ^ "Petric als Blitzarbeiter" (in German). kicker.de. Archived from the original on 11 June 2009. Retrieved 3 April 2010. 
  4. ^ "Lilien verstärken sich mit Leon Balogun" [Lilien strengthens with Leon Balogun] (in German). SV Darmstadt 98. 2 October 2014. Archived from the original on 4 October 2014. Retrieved 12 March 2015. 
  5. ^ "Leon Balogun: Brighton sign Nigeria international on free transfer". BBC Sport. 22 May 2018. 
  6. ^ "Brighton 3-2 Man Utd: Brighton score three first-half goals to stun visitors - BBC Sport". BBC Sport. 19 August 2018. 
  7. ^ "Joseph Yobo ruled out of Nigeria friendly against Mexico". BBC Sport. 4 March 2014. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  8. ^ "New Eagles star Balogun out for 2 months". MTNFootball.com. Archived from the original on 7 March 2014. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  9. ^ Wejinya, Sammy (14 March 2014). "Eagles' Balogun on the mend". SuperSport. Retrieved 5 June 2018. 
  10. ^ Udoh, Colin (3 June 2018). "Super Eagles drop Aina, Agu from World Cup squad". ESPN. Retrieved 5 June 2018. 
  11. ^ Leon Balogun at Soccerway
  12. ^ "Leon Balogun". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 23 June 2018. 
  13. ^ Dede, Steve (11 September 2017). "Bologun said he found strength in religion when he was struggling to make the grade as a teenager". pulse.ng. Retrieved 25 August 2018. 
  14. ^ Gleeson, Patrick (16 June 2018). "Leon Balogun: What can Premier League fans expect from Nigeria star?". Sporting News. Retrieved 25 August 2018. 
  15. ^ "Why I did not learn Yoruba — Leon Balogun". Nigeria Village Square. 23 March 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2018. 

External links[edit]