Chuba Akpom has been one of the Championship's leading players this season. He has netted goals in his abundance following his return to England. The forward is finally living up to the promise he showed earlier in his career while at Arsenal and a Super Eagles call-up could be on the cards. Next season, he could finally be a Premier League center forward again.
The journey to finding form at Middlesbrough
Akpom's time at Middlesbrough alone has not been shy of bumps and turns. He first joined the club from the Greek side PAOK in the summer of 2020. His first season was disappointing as he netted on just five occasions across 38 Championship appearances. He returned to Greece on a loan move the following year, and his Boro career seemed unlikely to be resurrected.
However, this season he returned to the English club determined to earn a starting spot. Akpom suffered a knee injury in the opening month of the season while playing against Sheffield United. However, seven weeks later he returned under a new manager Michael Carrick. He netted the decisive goal in a 1-0 victory over Birmingham City.
Akpom has excelled as the club's star player ever since. The former Arsenal man has been the main driving force in Middlesbrough's promotion challenge. The Manchester United legend might have unlocked the peak version of Akpom. The Nigerian forward scored 26 goals in his opening 34 league appearances this season.
Michael Carrick and @cakpom have been nominated for the @SkyBetChamp monthly awards for March #UTB
— Middlesbrough FC (@Boro) April 6, 2023
Goals are guaranteed whenever the forward stars for his club. Defenders are also likely to receive cards for their efforts to deal with his pace and physicality. The best betting tipsters covering a range of sporting markets are available at SBPortfolio. They offer expert advice in relation to specific markets based on a variety of soccer leagues.
Chris covers card betting and Peter covers the niche of goal-line betting. Research and statistics are vital aspects of their work. For example, games involving prolific frontmen are likely to feature many goals, as well as the potential for cards for struggling defenders.
Ultimately, statistics do not lie - the players featured in a contest can give a strong indicator of the likelihood of certain events taking place in the game. When consistent goalscorers like Akpom are lining up for their clubs, there is a strong chance of goals. He has become one of the league's standout players and regularly has a huge impact on the fixtures he appears in.
Akpom was backed for success at Arsenal
Akpom was expected to become a top player at Arsenal. However, his minutes were rare for the first team and he had to settle for several unsuccessful loan stints early in his career. It took an eventual move to PAOK for Akpom to play regular first-team football. In Greece, he gained valuable experience against European sides in continental competition.
He returned to England as a more well-rounded and more mature forward. His confidence and composure have improved massively. The potential to be a Premier League standard forward has not faded away yet. Akpom simply needed the ideal environment in order to thrive. A long-term career at Arsenal was not meant to be, but Carrick has found the confident forward in Akpom that was yet to be unleashed.
— Chuba Akpom (@cakpom) March 18, 2023