The player has scored 20 goals in 180 appearances in his career.

Chennaiyin FC have roped in German midfielder Julius Duker ahead of the upcoming edition of the Indian Super league. The 26-year-old is Chennaiyin FC’s final foreign signing of the 2022/23 season.

Brazilian midfielder Rafael Crivellaro, defenders Fallou Diagne and Vafa Hakhamaneshi, strikers Kwame Karikari and Petar Slišković are the other five overseas recruitments done by the club.

Julius Duker is an excellent addition to the Marina Machans. Chennaiyin FC coach Thomas Brdarić will look to use Anirudh Thapa and Mohammed Rafique as his two main central midfielders during the upcoming season. Moreover, Rafael Crivellaro is likely to play as the club’s first-choice attacking midfielder. Duker is expected to start the season as a substitute and might start making it to the starting line-up as the season progresses. 

Prior experience

Julius Duker will play his 9th season in professional football when he represents Chennaiyin FC in the 2022-23 ISL season. He has enjoyed spells across several clubs in Germany. Across his career, he has scored 20 goals in 180 appearances till date.

Julius started his youth career with German club VfL Wolfsburg and played for a couple of other teams before breaking into the senior side of Eintracht Braunschweig. He played for the club’s senior and reserve teams between 2014 and 2016. The 26-year-old played a total of 42 games for the club before switching clubs.

Julius Duker during his stay at 1. FC Magdeburg. (Courtesy: Sportfotos Magdeburg)

The German player has also represented 1. FC Magdeburg, SC Paderborn, SV Meppen and TSV Havelse in the past. Duker had another short stint with Eintracht Braunschweig in 2019 when he was loaned out to the club by SC Paderborn. He found the back of the net thrice in 10 matches. 

He last represented 3. Liga outfit TSV Havelse during the 2021-22 season and made 30 appearances for the club before signing a contract with Chennaiyin FC. The latter will be his first club outside Germany and seventh overall, since making his debut in 2014. 

Type of player

Julius Duker plays as a defensive midfielder but might also be open to playing as a midfielder or an attacking midfielder. With him being an adaptable player, he is surely an asset to the club as the coach can use him in any position per the situation. 

He is a versatile player and opponents will have to be prepared for the challenges they will face against Duker during the upcoming season. Moreover, his height of 187 cm will also help the Marina Machans’ cause. 

The player will have to form a good understanding with all midfielders and attackers in the club as he might play across various positions in the 2022/23 ISL season. By building a good bonding with the players, he will be able to communicate well and execute the manager’s plans well during the matches.

What does he bring to the team?

Commenting on the club’s last foreign recruit, Chennaiyin FC co-owner Vita Dani said: “Our final foreign signing Julius will be a great fit in this youthful and fresh-looking team we have put together. His versatility will be a good asset for the team.”

The 26-year-old adds value and versatility to the club’s midfield. His physical ability will create problems for any opponent, as it would be a tough task for the opponent to get the ball past him or stop him from tackling the ball. He will also be handful when it comes to aerial challenges.

He has rich experience of playing across clubs in Germany. The player could play a key role in ending the club’s bad performances over the last couple of seasons. Duker joins the club with a desire of helping them lift their much-awaited third Indian Super League trophy.

He said, “I’m just excited to finally be able to meet the team, the staff and our fans. Of course, I’m motivated to achieve the goals set by the club. I will work hard to create successful times for the club again. But first I want to get to know the team and get in shape.”

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