With the Africa Cup of Nations billed for Egypt just around the corner, Club Brugge winger, Emmanuel Dennis is pressing Nigerian national team gaffer, Gernot Rohr, for a chance at the biennial competition with the rate he has been painting the Belgian League with goals
The Nigeria U-23 winger Emmanuel Dennis continued his impressive streak of form after scoring for the second consecutive game as Club Brugge made light work of Standard Liege 4-0 in a Belgian First Division game on Monday evening.
The Brugge No. 42 headed home a Hans Vanaken’s delivery on the 39th-minute mark to stretch his side’s lead, his seventh goal from his 20 league appearances so far this season.
And it was the 21-year-old that created the final goal of the contest at the Jan Breydel Stadium when he set up Wesley in the 80th minute.
Such was his performance that his manager, Ivan Leno could not help lauding the improvement he has made this term, while even drawing comparisons with two of the game’s greatest players.
“The difference between today’s Dennis and that of three months ago is that he continues to play in turbo after twenty or thirty minutes,” Leko said in his press conference.
“He can provide extra motivation for top matches but in the past, he sometimes stops playing football after one goal or assists. That is no longer the case.
“Whether he will ever be able to reach the Ronaldo or Messi level? He has a lot of talent but will still have to eat a lot of sandwiches.”
After helping Club Brugge break 21 years curse by beating Anderlecht 3-2 in away at Constant Vanden Stock Stadium penultimate week in which the Abuja-born star found the target in the 34th minute to put his side two-goal up, after Wesley Moraes’s early opener.
The Dream VII star use his Twitter to celebrate the win after 30 attempts in 21 seasons since 1998 before breaking the jinx of defeating Anderlecht in the Belgium Jupiler.
Dennis has now scored his sixth goal of the season and is already dreaming of UEFA Champions League football and the win for Club Brugge just see them one point adrift of the Jupiler League leaders Genk and Anderlecht are suddenly fifth, occupying a non-European place on the standings. Dennis is a product of the Accademia di Abuja had before now played for the Nigerian U-15 national team.
In March 2016, he signed a contract with Ukrainian club FC Zorya Luhansk, playing in the Ukrainian Premier League and made his debut for FC Zorya on July 24, 2016, where he scored on bus debut.
Dennis started the season on the bench mostly before given his UEFA Europa League debut against Feyenoord on November 2. After impressing against Feyenoord, he got to play the other group stages games, with Zorya ending up getting eliminated from the group after finishing last. Dennis hadn’t however gone unnoticed though, with both Manchester City and an unknown German top club showing interest in signing him in the winter transfer window.
He instead ended up staying with Zorya for the rest of the season, helping them to a third place in the league with his six goals in 22 league appearances.
In 2017, Club Brugge announced that they had signed Emmanuel Bonaventure Dennis from Zorya on a four-year-contract of a fee worth €1.2 million, and was given the number 42 by his new club. He started the season extremely well, scoring five goals in six matches including a goal in his debut against Istanbul Basaksehir and a brace against Lokeren.
Dennis continued his fine form in the playoff round, scoring for the second consecutive game to help Club Brugge with a perfect start in the playoffs as they push the chase on Genk in the race for the league title.