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Kenneth Omeruo

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In January 2012, Kenneth joined Chelsea and was immediately loaned to ADO Den Haag in the Dutch Eredivisie until the end of the 2012-13 season. A centre-back by trade, he was immediately used at right-back and with great effect, as he make a regular impact with his athleticism and work rate coming to the fore. He scored his first goal in April 2012 against Groningen.

The 2012-13 season was again spent in Den Haag, where he picked up more valuable experience in Europe's premier development league. After impressing at the African Nations Cup for Nigeria, he was moved from his regular spot at right-back to earn more consideration as a central defender.

Nigeria's success at the African Nations meant they qualified for the Confederations Cup in Brazil in the summer of 2013, and once again Kenneth was a regular at the heart of the defence. He returned to Chelsea for pre-season but underwent shoulder surgery which kept him out until mid-October. Upon his return, he trained and played with the Under-21 squad until Christmas.

On 7 January 2014, Omeruo joined Middlesbrough on loan until the end of the 2013–14 season.

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Great to see links like this! Anybody got more info on this kid?

Quote http://www.mtnfootball.com/international/fifa-u-20-world-cup/players/nigeria/kenneth-omeruo.html

A classy central defender who along with former skipper Fortune Chukwudi held firm in the heart of the back four as the Golden Eaglets marched all the way to the final of the U17 World Cup two years ago.

He is tactically disciplined, has great anticipation and he is cool under pressure.

He missed the AYC as he opted to get a contract in Europe. He has a junior contract at Standard Liege of Belgium and will most likely be offered a pro deal in October when he turns 18.

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I was pretty sure when I woke up this morning that I'd be reading about Chelsea finalizing a deal with Bolton center back Gary Cahill, but some quotes out of the Netherlands have me scrambling a little bit to keep up. If Sky or ESPN are to be believed, Chelsea are on the verge of signing 18 year old Nigerian center back Kenneth Omeruo from Standard Liege and subsequently loaning him out to Eredivisie side ADO Den Haag. The source for this speculation is reportedly a member of the Den Haag coaching staff who was attributed with the following quote:

If all papers are in order, I hope he can join us soon.

While this isn't the type of deal that will help us in the short term, Omeruo is certainly an interesting young player. I'll have some more info up on him later for you all and hopefully some more details of the deal will have leaked. This appears to be another in the line of buys for the future for the club, and having additional young talent in the ranks is always a good thing. Den Haag return to the Netherlands for the second half of the season for training next week before resuming the league on the 20th. Hopefully we'll have this deal wrapped up soon if it really is in the works.

Source: http://www.weaintgot...-kenneth-omeruo


This morning we heard the surprising news that Chelsea FC were on the verge of an agreement with Standard Liege over 18 year old center back Kenneth Omeruo, so it seems logical that we should take a little deeper look at the young center back. The young Nigerian is just breaking into the Standard 1st team so he hasn't featured too much there yet, but I have seen him quite a bit on the international level during both the 2009 U17 World Cup and the 2011 U20 World Cup. For those of you who were reading this blog regularly this past summer, you'll know that the Nigerian team was a big favorite of mine all summer. Besides being the youngest team in the tournament they were also probably the biggest, strongest, and fastest side in the competition. What they lacked in technical polish they made up in raw physical ability. Our latest transfer target very much fit that bill.

Omeruo stands 6'2" tall and is very solidly built for a player his age. Playing last summer's U20 tournament at just 17 years of age made him one of the youngest players in Colombia, but he more than held his own against the much older competition. Omeruo is noted for his raw athleticism at this point in his career, boasting exceptional pace, strength, and leaping ability. At just 18 it's certainly not out of the realm of possibility to believe that he'll greatly improve in all of those areas either, but I have little concern with this particular player that he'll lack the physical tools to play center back in the Premier League.

From a technical standpoint we have far less information to work with on the young defender. In the handful of times I've seen Omeruo play he's looked very strong in the air and at cutting out passes, but the Nigerians typically play a very deep back line and attempt to use their ridiculous speed on the wings to counter. Defensively he was very impressive, especially when considering he's typically been playing at a level above where he should be at his age. With the system the Nigerians use it's really hard to gauge how he is at positioning himself. At just 18 I'd anticipate that particular aspect of his game needs plenty of work, but you never know.

I really don't have too much to tell you all about his passing, as the Nigerian system typically led to very short outlet passes from the center of the defense where either the fullbacks or the holder would then ignite the counter. He didn't make any memorable cockups when I've seen him, but other than that it's hard to gauge his passing. Omeruo was a real threat when coming forward on set pieces, and his only international goal came in just that fashion (it's the second goal in this compilation):


I wish I had more video to show you, but sadly with a player this age it's awfully hard to come by. Hopefully this will help to encourage you all to watch more of the Nigerian youth setup though because they are an awfully fun team to watch.

At this point I've only seen Omeruo play in the center of the defense, and with his size and strength there is little reason to believe that's not his eventual home. He's certainly mobile enough that he could probably cover at fullback in the mold of Branislav Ivanovic or Micah Richards, or maybe even as a holder depending on how he develops technically. That's simply speculation at this point though, I've yet to see him in any role other than the center of the defense. Still, it's food for thought with a player so young that he's probably capable of playing several roles if that can increase his time on the pitch.

This would be an excellent time to buy Omeruo, as a purchase and loan before next January would mean he's on our books long enough to qualify as homegrown if he ever breaks through to the Chelsea first team. As far as a loan goes, Den Haag seems an excellent fit. He'll likely challenge for some playing time relatively soon there as Den Haag are both defensively terrible and in a relatively safe position in the table. A few years in the Netherlands won't be a bad thing for him as he attempts to gain a work permit either.

If the reports of this signing turn out to bear fruit, that would mark the third standout performer from last summer's U20 World Cup that Chelsea have signed (Davila, Romeu). This one will not be a signing that will help in the near future but he'd certainly be yet another interesting young talent to add to the mix down the line. I can't imagine this deal will be prohibitively expensive either due to the extremely early stage in his development that he is at. Cross your fingers that this one is true guys (and girls), this kid was really impressive in the few times I've seen him.

Source: http://www.weaintgot...-kenneth-omeruo

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Looks like the deal is done:


"It’s a very huge step in my career and I will grab it with both hands,” Omeruo said

Omeruo, who featured at last year’s FIFA U20 World Cup in Colombia, will in the first instance play in the Dutch league on loan to ADO Den Haag. This was after an arrangement to farm him out on loan to another Dutch club Vitesse fell through.

Pleasantly surprising deal.

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A Nigerian Defender? As Mikel started life as a Trequartista and has evolved into a Holding Man I expect this young aspect to end up as a Striker. It is only logical.

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