There has been a lot of buzz about the Gernot Rohr led Super Eagles squad, starting from when the team made headlines weeks ago as the first African team to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, straight to their stunning 4-2 victory over Argentina in a friendly match last Tuesday, November 13.
One of the stars of the match was 25 year old Brian Idowu who made a debut for Nigeria in the friendly match and scored the third goal at the 52nd minute of the match. He introduced himself prior to the match in a video shared on the Super Eagles Official social media accounts but there’s even more to know about Brian Idowu.
Here are five things to know about the talented defender everyone is talking about:
1. The Genesis
Idowu was born and raised in St. Petersburg, except for a period when he was living in Owerri, Nigeria, between the ages of 3 to 6. His father is Nigerian while his mother is half Russian, half-Nigerian. When Brian returned back to Russia with his Parents, he had to learnt Russian quickly before going to school — where he eventually excelled at Russian literature.
2. Football Career
Brian kicked off his football career at FC Smena St. Petersburg but left when the club dissolved for Zenith St. Petersburg. He left Zenith St. Petersburg when he was 18 and joined FC Amker Perm.
3. FC Amker Perm
Brian made his Russia Premier League debut for FC Amkar Perm on 6 May 2012 in a game against FC Terek Grozny. After a loan spell with Dynamo St.Petersburg during the 2013–14 season, Idowu signed a new 3-year deal with FC Amker on 30 June 2014, extending his contract again in February 2017 until the summer of 2020.
4. Playing Style
Inspired by watching Ronaldo and Roberto Baggio at the 1998 World Cup, he started out as a striker, then tried being a goalkeeper, before settling as an attack-minded right-back at the age of 12. Brian, whose market value is currently £1.08m, is known to be very versatile and has excelled as a right back, wing-back in a three-man defence formation and also in left midfield. This season, he has played in central defence and also in wing-back positions.
5. Brian’s Future with the Super Eagles
There is one last slot in the Super Eagles full-back position and after his strong showing in the Argentinian friendly, Brian is very likely to get the slot. He has expressed his enthusiasm to play for the Super Eagles; “I feel great (with Nigeria), I have been well received by both players and coaches. The atmosphere is very positive. For me this is a huge chance and experience. As for why I’m not playing for Russia, I shouldn’t be asked this question. I want to go to the World Cup for Nigeria, because they believed in me.”
The world is definitely going to be hearing more about Brian Idowu.