Tyronne Ebuehi has only just one appearance for the Super Eagles at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, but it is still a win for him, considering how he got into the squad and what he has been through.
Ebuehi was one of the players with dual-nationalities that made their international bow under former coach Gernot Rohr.
The 26-year-old was born in Holland to a Dutch mother and a Nigerian father, making him eligible to represent the two nations.
Ebuehi’s talents were first spotted at HFC EDO O19 before he joined Ado Den Haag’s U19 team. He stayed with Den Haag’s youth team for just a year before joining the first team.
He made his first-team debut for the club in the 2014/2015 season, making seven league appearances in the Eredivisie.
From that moment, it was clear to see that Den Haag had a gem in their hands. He doubled his league appearance the following campaign before sealing his place permanently in the team in the 2016/2017 season, making 29 league appearances.
Ebuehi’s profile continued to grow the following season, making 28 appearances. At the end of that season, he was one of the best full-backs and youngsters in Dutch football.
His performance in the 2017/2018 season earned him a call-up to Nigeria’s squad for the 2018 World Cup. He made just one appearance, coming on as a second-half substitute against Iceland, but it was enough for him to make an impact as Nigeria won 2-0.
Following the 2018 World Cup, it was clear that Ebuehi had outgrown Ado Den Haag and a move away from the club was imminent.
And it proved to be true as Benfica signed him on a five-year deal. However, Ebuehi’s career with The Eagles ended before it even started after he suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury that ruled him out of the whole 2018/2019 season.
He returned in the 2019/2020 season, but he never played for the first team. Knowing he had to get his career back on track, Ebuehi returned to his birth country to sign for Twente on loan.
Twente offered Ebuehi a chance to put his career back in line, and it was an opportunity he took well. He made 33 league appearances, scoring one goal and one assist for the club.
His performance was so convincing and impressive that Twente were willing to have him for another year, but Benfica were only interested in a permanent sale.
As a result, Ebuehi had to leave the Dutch club. But he secured another loan move to the Italian Serie A with newly-promoted side Venezia.
He has made 12 appearances for the Venice based side this season. It has indeed been a rocky career for the 26-year-old but he has shown strong mental resilience to overcome his battles.
At the international stage, Ebuehi has 10 caps for Nigeria. The 2021 AFCON is his second major tournament for the country, but he will hope Nigeria can go all the way this time around.