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Nigeria duo of Ujah, Abdullahi part ways with Bundesliga side Union Berlin

3:38 PM IST 14/05/22
The Berlin-based club has confirmed the exit of five players, among them two Africans, ahead of the new campaign

Union Berlin have confirmed the departure of five players among them Nigeria internationals Anthony Ujah and Suleiman Abdullahi.

In a statement on their official website, the Berlin-based club has named the other three players as goalkeeper Jakob Busk, vice-captain Grischa Promel and Bastian Oczipka. All five players have ended their contracts and will not be renewed.

“Following the announcement of Grischa Promel’s summer switch to Hoffenheim, four other first-team players will say their goodbyes at the end of the season,” Union Berlin wrote on their official website. “The contracts of Jakob Busk, Bastian Oczipka, Anthony [Ujah] and Suleiman [Abdullahi] won’t be extended beyond the summer.”

The statement continued: “Around five minutes before kick-off against Bochum, the Union support will have the opportunity to wish them well.”

Speaking on the exit of the 25-year-old Abdullahi, who was born in Kaduna, Nigeria, and signed his first professional contract with Viking FK in 2015, the club explained: “Suleiman [Abdullahi] will be a name in Union history following his goal in the relegation play-off match at VfB Stuttgart.

“That goal was one of the decisive actions to help Union secure promotion to the Bundesliga for the first time. The striker joined from Eintracht Braunschweig in 2018 and returned on loan in 2020-21.”

Meanwhile, Union Berlin have also discussed the exit of the 31-year-old Ujah, who began his career with Abuja FC and also featured for Mainz 05, Werder Bremen, and Liaoning Whowin.

“Anthony [Ujah] joined FC Union ahead of the first-ever season in the Bundesliga,” the club explained. “He brought experience and goals from his previous time at Mainz and Koln.

“He scored three goals in his first season in Kopenick, including one in an important 2-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach. The Nigerian unfortunately suffered knee issues and after surgery was forced to miss a long phase.

“In February 2022, he returned to action against Borussia Dortmund and was greeted with cheers of 'Tony' from the crowd at the Alte Forsterei.”

The exit of the two Nigerian players, however, leaves another Super Eagle - Taiwo Awoniyi - in their ranks. Awoniyi officially rejoined Union Berlin, on July 20, 2021, this time on a permanent basis from Liverpool.

The 24-year-old has gone ahead to be the darling of Union Berlin fans, as he has netted 13 goals in this Bundesliga season, which ranks him joint sixth overall in this category, while also making him the top league scorer for his side.

In addition, he has chipped in with one assist.