Raphael Onyedika: Three Reasons Super Eagles Star Is the Solution to Barcelona Midfield Woes

Raphael Onyedika: Three Reasons Super Eagles Star Is the Solution to Barcelona Midfield Woes

Ero Samson
updated at February 21, 2024 at 3:39 PM
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Super Eagles
South Africa
Raphael Onyedika Nwadike logo
R. O. Nwadike
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FC Barcelona
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SPA La Liga
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Club Brugge
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W. Troost-Ekong
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  • Raphael Onyedika has been one of Nigeria's brightest midfield prospects in recent years
  • The Club Brugge star has been linked with a move to Barcelona, according to reports
  • Sports Brief highlights three reasons why the 22-year-old will fit perfectly at the La Liga club

As the 2024 summer transfer window approaches, Barcelona faces another dilemma in their quest to fill the void left by former captain Sergio Busquets in the defensive midfield position.

Despite acquiring Oriol Romeu from Catalan neighbours Girona, the team has struggled to address the significant gap left by Busquets. Coach Xavi Hernandez has often had to deploy either Ilkay Gundogan or Frenkie De Jong in the defensive midfield role.

However, it's evident that neither player is ideally suited for it, as demonstrated by their occasional lapses and in-game errors.

Nigeria, Barcelona, Transfers, La Liga, Club Brugge, Raphael Onyedika
Raphael Onyedika during the UEFA Conference League match between Besiktas JK and Club Brugge. Image: Hollandse Hoogte.
Source: Getty Images

La Blaugrana are also grappling with a looming financial crisis, making a high-profile signing like Manchester City’s Rodrigo Hernandez seems out of reach. As a result, they are exploring more affordable options.

Among the potential players on their radar, according to a report from Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo, is Nigeria’s Raphael Onyedika. The 22-year-old Club Brugge star has been in excellent form this season, featuring 33 times for the Belgian outfit.

Nonetheless, with the report linking the Super Eagles star continuing to gain weight, Sports Brief highlights three reasons the Nigerian could be the solution to Barcelona's midfield woes.

Reasons why Onyedika is the solution to Barcelona’s midfield woes

Immense versatility

Onyedika's versatility on the field is an invaluable asset for any team. The Nigerian can seamlessly fit into various midfield roles, providing Barcelona with flexibility in tactics and formations.

Whether he is dictating play from deep or driving forward with intent, Onyedika's multifaceted skill set enhances Barcelona's midfield options.

Defensive stability

Onyedika's remarkable versatility is complemented by his astute defensive prowess.

At Club Brugge, he has excelled at the base of Ronny Deila’s midfield, seamlessly acting as the anchor in a three-man midfield and, sometimes, effectively thwarting opponents' attacks when deployed in a double pivot.

His blend of strength, vision, and technical ability aligns well with Barcelona's intricate passing style.

By adding Onyedika to their squad, Barcelona can enhance their midfield dynamics and discover new options of creativity.

Youth and potential

At 22 years old, Onyedika embodies not just promising talent but also a substantial investment in the future.

With his peak years lying ahead, Barcelona can reap the rewards of his development and potential resale value. Signing him now could pave the way for long-term midfield stability and success for the club.

Troost-Ekong speaks on Jose Peseiro

Sports Brief in another report stated that the vice-captain of the Super Eagles of Nigeria, William Troost-Ekong, shared his thoughts on the immediate future of coach Jose Peseiro.

The 30-year-old emphasised the desire of himself and his teammates for the former Sporting CP manager to continue.

Ero Samson photo
Ero Samson
Samson Ero is a sports journalist with a track record of over five years in the Nigerian media industry. He graduated from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (2021-2023).