Radja Nainggolan Bio

image taken from : Royal Belgian Football Association
FULL NAMERadja Nainggolan
BORNMay 4, 1988
HEIGHT1.76 m (5 ft 9 1⁄2 in)

Radja Nainggolan is a Belgian footballer who now for AS Roma in Serie A. He was born in Antwerp, Belgium, on May 4, 1988. Nainggolan is a centre midfielder, though he has also played in the defensive midfield and on the wings. In midfield, he is a box-to-box midfielder who blends power and quickness. Nainggolan is also recognised for his long-range shooting skill and never-say-die attitude on the field.


At the age of five, Nainggolan began playing football with Tubantia Borgerhout in Belgium. His skill was recognised, and he made his debut for Germinal Beerschot as a young player. After that, everything went smoothly for Nainggolan, and he stepped up his game when he arrived in Italy.

Germinal Beerschot, Piacenza, Cagliari, Roma, Belgium U16, U19, U20, U21, and the senior side are among the teams Nainggolan has represented.


On May 28, 2006, Nainggolan made his professional debut for Piacenza in Serie B.

Nainggolan debuted for Belgium against Chile in the Kirin Cup on May 29, 2009.

Rise to Glory

At the age of 21, Nainggolan made his international debut against Chile in a competitive event. He possessed unique skills in midfield, including excellent defence. Because of his flexibility, he is regarded as one of Europe’s most complete midfielders. He has spent the majority of his career in Italy and hasn’t moved around much.

From the age of 16 to 21, Nainggolan was a member of Belgium’s youth teams, preferring to play for his country above his club. Nainggolan looked to fit right in after earning his maiden cap, until he was left out of the 2014 World Cup roster. In the 2016 UEFA Euro qualifying campaign, he was a starter. In only a few games throughout the tournament, he played the whole 90 minutes and scored two goals, one against Sweden and the other against Wales in the quarter-finals.

After being left out of the World Cup qualifying matches in 2017, Nainggolan declared his wish to retire from international football. When Roberto Martinez called him up for friendlies against Mexico and Japan, he changed his mind. Due to an injury, he was forced to leave the team.

Nainggolan has appeared in 29 games, scoring six goals and assisting on three others.

In May 2018, Nainggolan announced his retirement from international football after being left out of Belgium’s World Cup roster.

Club Career

Nainggolan began his professional football career with Piacenza in Serie B. After making his senior debut, he became a regular starter for Emilia-Romagna in the 2008-09 season. He started 38 of the team’s 42 games and scored three goals in the process, allowing them to avoid relegation.

Nainggolan was loaned to Cagliari in Serie A the following year. He only appeared in seven games before the club announced that he had been bought in a co-ownership arrangement. Due to the absence of Daniele Conti, he began playing frequently the next season. Over the following four seasons, he appeared in 137 games, scoring seven goals and adding six assists.

In 2014, AS Roma signed Nainggolan on a loan deal worth €6 million, which included a 50% purchase price. He scored two goals in 17 league appearances, which was enough to earn him a contract. In the summer of 2015, he signed a long-term contract, which he extended through 2020.

In just four years, Nainggolan has assimilated into Roma’s system, having appeared in 193 games across all competitions. In his stay, he improved his goal-scoring record, scoring 30 goals. After settling into the central midfield position, he also racked up 26 assists.

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