When the 27 year old Nigerian forward arrived Odense in 2008, it seemed a far cry from where he had lived for some years in Belgium. Although he lived in Antwerp, he always expected life in Odense to be a lot more different from where he was coming from. He travelled up to Odense to start a new life with the Fyn’s main soccer lord and never believed it would be the most exiting period of his carreer. Since his arrival in 2008, Peter Utaka has not only being the club’s highest goal scorer but also the highest goal scorer in the Danish Superliga in the past three years.
Peter Utaka, the junior brother of John Utaka who played for Portsmouth in England never doubted his ability to follow in his brother’s footstep in soccer’s big stages. Prior to his sojourn to Europe he had played for the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Football Club, in his tutelage years, before travelling to Belgium to play for a couple of Belgium’s lower division sides which included Royal Antwerp and Westerloo. In Belgium, he distinguished himself by scoring a number of goals that rated him high among other strikers in the league. His fans were however shocked by his Danish move, thinking he was on his way to play for the big Belgian clubs like Anderlecht or F.C Brugge.
Peter has been the main factor in the resurgence of Odense Boldklub in recent years, his arrival has witnessed string of successes for the Danish club, as the club started challenging for major titles in both Danish league and in Europe after a protracted doldrums. Many observers of Danish football now see a serious challenger to the all dominating F.C Copenhagen. The resurgence of Odense Boldklub has also created a new order in Danish football league as other major clubs like Brondby FC have to drop points which enable Odense BK to move higher on the league’s table. There is no gainsay that Utaka’s goals have contributed so much to the meteoric rise of Odense in recent years. He was the highest goal scorer and golden boots winner in the past two seasons. For these remarkable achievements, he remains grateful to God and his team which parades a Cameroonian star and former Manchester United player, Eric Djemba Djemba.
Since the begining of this season Peter has however not been able to rekindle his glowing traits owing largely to the fact that his club lost a lot of matches in the autumn of 2010, which led to crises in the club. The crises also saw several major players left the club . The aftermath of this resulted in the club occupying a second position in the current SAS Superliga with Peter Utaka coming third on the scorers chart behind Dame Ndoye and Cesar Santin of F.C Copenhagen.
By Afroscandic Contributor, Michael Ilori from Copenhagen, Denmark.