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NPFL 2023 season: Player to watch; Plateau United midfielder, Tochukwu Michael (photos)
NPFL 2023 season: Player to watch; Plateau United midfielder, Tochukwu Michael (photos)

It is a thing of delight to realize that the Nigeria Professional Football League 2023 season returns this Sunday, January 8, after a long off-season.

With the new campaign about to kickoff, fans and supporters are all wondering the same thing, who are the favourites to go up? Who will qualify for play-offs? And who could get relegated? But there’s yet another key question that leaves the fans pondering and it has to do with which players can we expect big things from over the next five months?

Tochukwu Michael (Plateau United): Midfielder

Tochukwu Michael is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Nigeria League club Plateau United. A versatile player who mainly plays as a central midfielder, Tochukwu Michael can also be deployed as a defensive or attacking midfielder.

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Being a central midfield monster, Michael’s ability to win back balls is arguably his biggest strength. Not only is he incredibly effective but his ball winning toolkit is incredibly diverse at the same time. He is a good tackler, can make clean interception, can battle aerially and recover loose balls just as well.

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The ex Nasarawa United midfielder loves to be involved in the thick of action. He is never scared to engage his opponents in aerial duels, averaging approximately 12.9 duels per 90 minutes with a success rate of 78.6% in NPFL last season.

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Tochukwu Michael’s size and raw athleticism gives him a very big zone of control in the midfield. His physique makes him a physically dominant presence to come up against in one-v-one situations. His challenges are well timed and he uses the angle of approach to his advantage, when going in for the ball.

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He enjoyed a superb 2021/2022 season in the Nigeria Professional Football League with Nasarawa United where he featured 31 times, netted 11 goals, provided 6 assists, won 8 Man of the Match awards and named in team of the season. He ended the last term as Nasarawa United’s Most Valuable Player, as the club top scorer and highest assist provider.

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He will be defending the colors of Plateau United in the 2023 season after bidding farewell to Nasarawa United at the end of last season.

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