Chidera Ejuke now officially 3rd best dribbler, 7th fastest player in the world

By Innocent Benjamin

On the back of two consecutive player of the months award in Russia, Nigerian dazzler, Chidera Ejuke, has taken his recognition to the global stage.

On the back of two consecutive player of the months award in Russia, Nigerian dazzler, Chidera Ejuke, has taken his recognition to the global stage, according to official November reports from CIES football observatory. 

The dribbling report tagged "Issue number 354", covers players from the top 33 leagues worldwide, and considers only footballers with at least 40 dribbles completed this season. 

Citing this very competitive criteria, the fleet-footed Wolverhampton winger, Adama Traore, came out trumps amongst his contemporaries as the world's current best dribbler. Following some paces behind is South American-based Nahuel Luján, an Argentine forward. 

But of most interest to us was Nigerian dribbling king, Chidera Ejuke, who is now officially the 3rd best dribbler in the world and the best in Africa. Playing in the Eurasian nation of Russia with CSKA Moscow, Chidera was a fair mile ahead of fourth-placed Erick de Arruda. 

Chidera Ejuke in action in Russia

The former Heerenven winger has completed 48 leg-splitting dribbles this term at a rate of 65%. Born in the northern city of Zaria, Kaduna State in Nigeria, the 23-year-old is also the youngest of the top 4 on this list. 

Relatively unknown to the Nigerian audience, Ejuke announced himself to the green country in an October 13th friendly cameo against Tunisia in 2020, effortlessly weaving past the North African defence with enviable ease. 

This marked his first ever cap for his home country, but, he had to patiently await his next call up to the national setup, an invite which came almost a year after his first. 

After humiliating the Central African Republic defence in two sequences of individual brilliance in his fifth appearance, Nigerians were once again reminded of the ability in this young man's possession, as he earned comparison with legendary midfielder, Jay-Jay Okocha. 

Less than a month following this display, he is now the third best dribbler in professional football worldwide.

Ejuke in the Super Eagles' Camp

Here is the complete list of the ten best dribblers in the world currently according to CIES:

  1. Adama Traore - Wolverhampton FC - Spanish 
  2. Nahuel Luján - Universidad de Chile - Argentine 
  3. Chidera Ejuke CSKA Moskva - Nigerian
  4. Erick de Arruda - Ceará SC - Brazilian 
  5. Manor Solomon - Shakhtar Donetsk - Israeli 
  6. Mounir Chouiar - Yeni Malatyaspor - French 
  7. Khvicha Kvaratskhelia - Rubin Kazan - Georgian
  8. David Fofana - Molde FK - Ivorian
  9. Igor Ivanović - Shakhtyor Soligorsk - Montenegrin 
  10. Haissem Hassan - CD Mirandés - French 

7th Fastest Player in the World - FIFA

Although his ability to take on any opposition is the most discernible attribute in his repertoire, another official body in the form of Fifa-licensed video game, FIFA 22, have also pinpointed him as one of the most pacy footballers on earth. 

In the newly released EA Sports football simulation franchise, FIFA 22, Ejuke has been awarded the virtual accolade of being the joint-seventh fastest player in the world, along with 12 other players. 

The Nigerian might have been raging at his low overall score of 74, but will now find a much-deserved compensation in his speed ratings. 

With a pace of 94, Chidera just falls short of Kylian Mbappe's game-high searing value of 97.

Here is the full list of the 20 fastest players in the world according to Fifa 22:

  1. Kylian Mbappé - Paris Saint-Germain - ST - 97 PAC
  2. Adama Traoré - Wolves - RW - 96 PAC
  3. Alphonso Davies - Bayern München - LB - 96 PAC
  4. Daniel James - Leeds - RM - 95 PAC
  5. Achraf Hakimi - Paris Saint-Germain - RB - 95 PAC
  6. Vinícius Jr. - Real Madrid - LW - 95 PAC
  7. Gerrit Holtmann - VfL Bochum - LM - 94 PAC
  8. Ismaïla Sarr - Watford - RW - 94 PAC
  9. Georges-Kévin Nkoudou - Beşiktaş - LM - 94 PAC
  10. Linton Maina - Hannover 96 - RM - 94 PAC
  11. Rhayner - Sanfrecce Hiroshima - RM - 94 PAC
  12. Tom Barkhuizen - Preston North End - RM - 94 PAC
  13. Takeshi Kanamori - Avispa Fukuoka - RM - 94 PAC
  14. Rafa - Benfica - RM - 94 PAC
  15. Frank Acheampong - Shenzhen FC - LW - 94 PAC
  16. Iñaki Williams - Athletic Club de Bilbao - ST - 94 PAC
  17. Sebastián Villa - Boca Juniors - RM - 94 PAC
  18. Chidera Ejuke - CSKA Moscow - LM - 94 PAC
  19. Moussa Diaby - Bayer 04 Leverkusen - LW - 94 PAC
  20. Theo Hernández - Milan - LB - 93 PAC

So far in the 2021/22 campaign, Ejuke has 4 goals and 2 assists in 13 games, as he looks to beat his total tally of 5 goals and 3 assists in the entirety of last season.

What is CIES?

According to Wikipedia:

The International Centre for Sports Studies, known mostly by the initials CIES from the French Centre International d'Etude du Sport, is an independent, research and education organization, located in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, that collates data from around the world.