Olunga wins Asian Champions League Golden Boot award

Olunga wins Asian Champions League Golden Boot award

Olunga, whose club side, Al Duhail were eliminated in the group stages, plundered a competition leading 9 goals, just edging Gustavo from South Korean club side Hyundai Jeonbuk.

Michael Olunga

Harambee Stars captain Michael Olunga added another feather to his cap, claiming the Asian Football Confederation’s Champions League Golden Boot.

Olunga, whose club side, Al Duhail were eliminated in the group stages, plundered a competition leading 9 goals, just edging Gustavo from South Korean club side Hyundai Jeonbuk.

The former Gor Mahia forward currently leads the Qatar Stars League scoring charts with 12 goals, one more than Al Saad’s Baghdad Bounedjah and former EPL star and Ghanian international Andre Ayew who is on 7 goals.

More about Michael Olunga

While still a student at the Upper Hill School, Olunga began his career with the Liberty Sports Academy in the Nairobi County League. He scored 32 goals for the side during the 2012 season, helping them finish the season unbeaten and earn promotion to the Nairobi Provincial League. He made headlines when he scored seven goals in a single match helping his team to an 8–0 win.

Olunga signed for Kenyan Premier League side Tusker on a one-year loan deal from Liberty on 19 December 2012.

After finishing the 2013 season with two goals for Tusker, Olunga was loaned to fellow Premier League side Thika United for another year, before joining Gor Mahia before the beginning of the 2015 season. He finished the season as the club's top scorer in the league with 19 goals to help the side win a record 15th league title without losing a single match, including the second goal in a 2–0 win over Muhoroni Youth on their final league match of the season.

On 17 February 2016, Olunga joined Swedish side Djurgårdens IF on a four-year contract, after joining the team's pre-season training camp on trial. He scored his first two goals for Djurgården on 8 August 2016 against IFK Göteborg in a 3–1 win.He was also named man of the match and Djurgården coach Mark Dempsey praised him for his match winning heroics. In the next match Olunga scored once again in the 2–2 draw versus IF Elfsborg at the Tele2 Arena. On 27 August, he scored the match-winning goal against Gefle IF with a volley in the 86th minute. In the last 12 games of the Allsvenskan Olunga scored 12 goals which earned him a fifth place in the Allsvenskan top scorer table.He was nominated for Newcomer of the year in Swedish football by a jury of Allsvenskan coaches and Swedish journalists as well as the coaches of the Swedish national teams. The award later went to Alexander Isak.

On 10 November 2016, Kenyan football site Soka reported that Djurgården had turned down offers on Olunga from La Liga side Betis, Lokeren, Belgian champions Club Brugge and Swedish champions Malmö FF.

In 2017, Olunga joined Chinese club Guizhou Zhicheng.

On 1 September 2017, Olunga was loaned to La Liga side Girona FC, for one year. On 13 January 2018, he made his La Liga debut against Las Palmas scoring a hat-trick in the span of 22 minutes during a 6–0 win, becoming both the first Kenyan player and the first Girona player to score a hat-trick in La Liga.

On 10 August 2018, Olunga joined Japanese club Kashiwa Reysol.

 

On 24 November 2019, he scored eight goals for Kashiwa in a 13–1 victory over Kyoto Sanga.Olunga finished the season with 27 league goals as Kashiwa finished the J2 season as champions and won promotion to the first division.

In January 2021, Olunga moved to Qatar Stars League champions Al-Duhail on a three-seasons contract, for a reported transfer fee of €6 million.

He made his debut for the club on 12 January, in a 3–1 away loss against Al Sadd.On 25 January 2021, Olunga scored a hat-trick in Duhail's 6–0 win against Al Ahli in the Emir of Qatar Cup.Three months later, he scored a hat-trick in 4–3 win against Iranian club Esteghlal in the AFC Champions League.Olunga finished as the top scorer of the tournament, but Al-Duhail crashed out of the competition after a 1–1 draw with team Al Ahli Saudi in late April.

In J1 League play on 26 July 2020, Olunga scored a hat-trick against Vegalta Sendai; the match finished in a 5–1 victory.

Olunga finished as the top scorer in the 2020 Japanese J1 League with 28 goals, winning the Golden boot and the J-League 2020 MVP. He is the first African player to win the J-league MVP award.

Olunga made his debut for the Kenya national team in a friendly against Seychelles at the Stade Linité in Victoria on 28 March 2015.He scored his first goal for the Harambee Stars in a friendly against South Sudan which resulted in a 2–0 win.

Read more on : Harambee Stars

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