A versatile, technical central midfielder, who can play right back, Janio Bikel is comfortable in possession and defensively aware. The former Portuguese youth international joined Whitecaps FC in February 2020 via transfer from Bulgaria’s First Professional Football League side CSKA Sofia.
'21: In his second season with the ‘Caps, Bikel continued to show his excellent passing distribution and defensive capabilities, as well as his versatility playing as a deep-lying midfielder and as a right back. The native of Guinea-Bissau made 26 starts and tied for the team lead with 33 appearances during the MLS regular season. Bikel tallied the best passing accuracy amongst ‘Caps midfielders who started a match in 2021 with 86.6% and notched his first MLS assist on Déiber Caicedo’s goal in the club’s 3-2 comeback victory against Portland Timbers on October 20. Bikel also started the ‘Caps Canadian Championship match against Pacific FC.
'20: Bikel enjoyed a solid first year in MLS, starting all 12 matches he was available for during the shortened season as a valuable element in the 'Caps midfield. Per 90 minutes, he led all 'Caps with 2.09 tackles won, and was second among 'Caps field players with 6.55 recoveries.
'18-'20: Bikel joined CSKA Sofia in June 2018 and quickly became a key contributor, helping The Reds to a runner-up finish in the Bulgarian First League as well as a semifinal berth in the Bulgarian Cup in his first season.
‘15-’18: Bikel developed in the SC Heerenveen academy system, and eventually made his pro debut with the Eredivisie side in March 2015. He transferred to Dutch side NEC Nijmegen in July 2015, playing three seasons.
A native of Bissau, Guinea-Bissau, Bikel has represented Portugal at the U-19 and U-20 levels, including in the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup.