Super Eagles striker receives hero’s welcome on return to Berlin

The new Nottingham Forest forward was warmly welcomed back to the Stadion an der Alten Försterei where he scored 15 Bundesliga goals before his transfer to the EPL

Taiwo Awoniyi’s song rang out in the stands as he made his way onto the pitch in Saturday’s friendly game at the Stadion an der Alten Försterei.

In the past Awoniyi would wear the number 14 red strip of FC Union Berlin. This time around he came out of the tunnel in a blue warm up shirt of Nottingham Forest, the club that he made a record transfer to this summer.

Despite the change of clubs, Awoniyi is still as popular as he was with the fans and he was handed a commemorative photo and a jersey by the club before kickoff.

For anyone who missed the activities of the summer and just stumbled into this arena today, it would have been a strange sight to behold the Nigerian donning the number 9 in the yellow and blue strip of Nottingham Forest instead of the new red and white strip of the Irons. Such is the nature of the football business – here today, gone tomorrow. But heroes never die in the heart of the fans.

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A special reception for @taiwoawoniyi18 by his former teammates @fcunion_en ahead of the game. His song is still on the lips of the fans. They love him in Berlin. #NFFC

— Lolade Adewuyi (@Jololade) July 23, 2022

Awoniyi’s 15 Bundesliga goals last season helped the Irons secure a place in the Europa League group stage. And that was why Forest signed him after they gained promotion to the Premier League in a record 20.5million euros move.

It was good money for Union, one of the smaller clubs in the Bundesliga. His transfer windfall brought some money to their coffers to enable them maintain their place in the Bundesliga and to remain competitive with some new signings like American Jordan Siebatcheu, who scored Union’s lone goal in the game.

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In the game Awoniyi was full of running even as the home side enjoyed the bulk of the possession. Forest struggled to put their passes together and never created clear cut opportunities for the striking duo of Awoniyi and Alex Mighten to score.

By the time Awoniyi was substituted in the second half the home fans rose in unison to applaud him. His famous rallying song rang around the stands as he acknowledged the fans.

He will hope that he and Forest are firing on all cylinders when the Premier League season starts in August.



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