Peter Utaka

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Peter Utaka
Peter Utaka 2011.jpg
Personal information
Full name Peter Maduabuchi Utaka
Date of birth (1984-02-12) 12 February 1984 (age 34)
Place of birth Enugu, Nigeria
Height 1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Vejle Boldklub
Number 9
Youth career
1997 UNTH Nigeria[citation needed]
1999–2000 Dinamo Zagreb
2000–2004 UNTH Nigeria[citation needed]
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003–2004 Maasmechelen 35 (17)
2004–2007 Westerlo 73 (12)
2007–2008 Royal Antwerp 46 (26)
2008–2012 OB 108 (52)
2012–2013 Dalian Aerbin 43 (27)
2013–2014 Beijing Guoan 25 (8)
2014 Shanghai Shenxin (loan) 12 (2)
2015–2016 Shimizu S-Pulse 28 (9)
2016 Sanfrecce Hiroshima (loan) 33 (19)
2017 Sanfrecce Hiroshima 0 (0)
2017 FC Tokyo (loan) 25 (8)
2018 Vejle Boldklub 4 (0)
National team
2010–2011 Nigeria 7 (3)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 24 April 2018

Peter Maduabuchi Utaka (born 12 February 1984) is a Nigerian footballer with a Belgian passport who plays for Vejle Boldklub in Denmark. He is the younger brother of fellow professional footballer John Utaka.[1]

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Born in Enugu, Nigeria, Utaka moved to Croatia as a 16-year-old to play in Dinamo Zagreb after trying his luck at Ismaily where his older brother John was a cult figure and in the United Arab Emirates. In 2003, he moved to Belgium from Dinamo and signed for K. Patro Eisden Maasmechelen of the 2nd division. KVC Westerlo moved to sign him the following season, and in his first season in the top flight and the transfer was worth €250,000.

Royal Antwerpen[edit]

Utaka joined Royal Antwerp FC in January 2007 where he became a first team regular, and he helped Antwerp qualify for the playoffs, finishing second. He also emerged top scorer with 22 goals and capped hs glorious season, winning the Best Striker's Award. He also put more gloss on his breath-taking performance that season, claiming the Most Valuable Player's award over eight times, making him one of the most feared strikers in Belgium. On 30 August 2008, it was announced that Utaka would join Danish club OB.[2] for an undisclosed fee.

Odense Boldklub[edit]

Utaka joined Danish side OB in 2008. In his first season, he finished joint fourth place on the scorers list, while he led all scorers in his second season. In the 2009–10 Danish Superliga he finished with 18 goals in 33 matches[3], the first time in five years an OB player was top scorer in the league (last was Steffen Højer in 2004-05 with 20 goals).

Utaka stayed in OB for three and a half season winning three silver medals in his first three seasons in the Danish Superliga. He also represented the club in both UEFA Europa League and the 2011-2012 Champions League qualifing phase scoring a total of nine goals in 22 European matches for the club.

Dalian Aerbin[edit]

In January 2012, Utaka moved to Chinese Super League club Dalian Aerbin. He scored 20 goals in 28 games in his first season. He also scored 11 consecutive fixtures to establish a new C-league record.

Beijing Guoan[edit]

He transferred to Beijing Guoan on 9 July 2013 in a €2 million transfer which made him the most expensive international signing in the history of the club.[4] Utaka made 15 goals in 36 appearances in all competitions for the club, before he was loaned to Shanghai Shenxin during summer transfers in 2014, managing to score only four times in thirteen appearances in all competition for the Shanghai outfit.

Shimizu S-Pulse[edit]

In January 2015, Utaka transferred to J1 League-club Shimizu S-Pulse.[5] The club faced a difficult season that year as they were battling relegation. At the end of the season, Utaka scored nine goals in 29 appearances, and the club ended up being seventeenth-placed, thus relegated into the J2 League.

Sanfrecce Hiroshima[edit]

The next year he was loaned to J1 League defending champions Sanfrecce Hiroshima.[6] He scored his first goal for the club in the Japanese Super Cup final, in a 3–1 win against Gamba Osaka. Utaka bagged his first goal in the J1 League on 12 March, scoring a 67th-minute penalty against Shonan Bellmare in a 2–2 draw at home. He scored his next in a 1–5 away win against Omiya Ardija, scoring the opening in the 22nd minute.

FC Tokyo[edit]

After being bought by Sanfrecce Hiroshima, he was imeadeately loaned to FC Tokyo in March 2017[7]. He scored four goals in his first three matches for the J1 League-club even though he started all of the matches on the bench. He represented the club 33 times and scored 10 goals before he returned to Sanfrecce Hiroshima and his contract expired.

Vejle Boldklub[edit]

In February 2018 free agent Utaka trialled with Danish side Vejle Boldklub in Turkey, where the club was on a training camp.[8] Utakas agent Lucas Chang Jin is co-owner of Vejle Boldklub who at that time was number one in the Danish second tier. On 14 February 2018, the club announced thar Utaka had signed a contract until the summer of 2018.[9]

International career[edit]

On 21 September 2009, national coach Shaibu Amodu selected Peter for the Nigerian national football team. Utaka made his debut for Nigeria months later in a 5–2 home win over Congo DR on 3 March 2010, despite only getting his call up late after the NFF called his mother looking for him.[10][11] He scored the first goal and assisted on the second.[citation needed] He scored twice against in a Nations Cup qualifier against Ethiopia. His first goal was the fastest goal in the qualifications-29secs.

Career statistics[edit]

As of 23 February 2017[12]
Club Season League Cup League Cup Continental Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Denmark League Danish Cup League Cup Europe Total
Odense BK 2008–09 Superliga 27 12 0 0 27 12
2009–10 33 18 3 4 3 2 39 24
2010–11 32 14 1 0 10 6 43 20
2011–12 16 8 0 0 9 1 25 9
Total 108 52 4 4 0 0 22 9 0 0 134 65
China PR League FA Cup League Cup AFC Total
Dalian Aerbin 2012 CSL 28 20 1 0 29 20
2013 15 7 0 0 15 7
Total 43 27 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 44 27
Beijing Guoan 2013 CSL 12 7 3 4 0 0 15 11
2014 13 1 0 0 7 3 20 4
Total 25 8 3 4 0 0 7 3 0 0 35 15
Shanghai Shenxin (loan) 2014 CSL 12 2 1 2 13 4
Total 12 2 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 13 4
Japan League Emperor's Cup League Cup AFC Japanese Super Cup Total
Shimizu S-Pulse 2015 J1 League 28 9 1 0 29 9
Total 28 9 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 29 9
Sanfrecce Hiroshima 2016 J1 League 33 19 1 1 2 0 2 0 1 1 39 21
Total 33 19 1 1 2 0 2 0 1 1 39 21
Total Denmark 108 52 4 4 0 0 22 9 0 0 134 65
China PR 80 37 5 6 0 0 7 3 0 0 92 46
Japan 61 28 1 1 3 0 2 0 1 1 68 30
Career total 249 117 10 11 3 0 31 12 1 1 294 141

Honours[edit]

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]