• Agharaye Tseyi

Nigeria's lost sons

Since the turn of the century Nigeria has been a force to reckon with, not just in Africa but in World football as well, looking down the road Nigeria has lost a lot of talent who would have added to the pool of spectacular footballers we have already that have represented the country at all grade levels.

Afrofooty tends to look at the past, current and young footballers eligible to play for the Super eagles but decided to pledge their international future to other countries.

Goalkeeper- Arthur Okonkwo

Born 09/09/2001 in England, Okonkwo has been very impressive of late, he currently plays for Arsenal and England Under 18 making 6 appearances for them. Okonkwo attributes includes great reflex, playing with his feet, excellent distribution of the ball and great composure, for now he is still eligible to play for the Eagles, he would be a great addition to the squad and would bring excellent quality to the Eagles camp.

RB- Tosin Adarabioyo

Born in England to Nigerian parent, Tosin is eligible to play for both Nigeria and England. The defender has been praised on numerous occasion by Pep Guardiola as the potential Manchester city defender in the future. The center defender can also play on the right side of defence.

The defender represented England at U17, U18 and U19 levels but he is yet to make any senior appearance for the Three Lions. Considering that Balogun and Ekong are gradually come towards the tail end of their national career, Tosin would be a great addition to the squad

CB- Nedum Onuoah

Born in Warri, Delta State, Nigeria, Onuoha was brought up in Manchester, England. The former Manchester city and Queens Park Rangers defender was called up by the Nigeria in 2007 but rejected the call up in the hope that he would make the England senior team. Onuoah was never called up to represent England for senior level, he however represented England on different youth level and also captaining England U21 for the European Championship in Netherlands.

However, he admitted that he would play at the FIFA World Cup for Nigeria if he were to be called up, Nigeria never called him up again

RB Angelo Ogbonna

Ogbonna was born in Italy to Nigerian parents who emigrated to Italy from Nigeria in 1983, settling in the city of Cassino in the central part of the country, but managed to obtain Italian citizenship only after his 18th birthday. The experience defender has played for clubs like Torino, Juventus and currently Westham.

Until making debut for Italy 2011, Ogbonna was eligible to represent Nigeria, he however chose the Azurri of Italy over the Eagles.

LB David Alaba

Born 24 June 1992 in in Vienna, Austria. Alaba, whose father is Nigerian and of Filipino mother, plays for Austrian national team but only after he has been turned down by Nigeria.

The defender said he actually planned to join Nigeria's cadet team which won the 2007 FIFA World Youth Championship at South Korea but words reached him of his ineligibility.

Alaba, is no doubt one of the World best left back in the world As a very versatile player, Alaba has played in a multitude of roles, including central midfield, central defence, right and left wing, but has since blossomed as a left-back., he currently plays for Bayern Munch in Germany and is instrumental to the team.

DM- Tolaji Bola

Born in England to Nigerian parents, Bola has been a regular in the under-18s for over a year, while featuring occasionally for the under-19s and under-23s. Bola grew up in London and is a graduate of the Hale End academy.

Despite having featured at under-16 level for England, if he continues to progress in his career, he could one day have a decision to make as to whether he wants to play for the Three Lions or Nigeria at senior level. Hopefully he chooses Nigeria.

CM- Ross Barkley

This might be surprising to a few, Yes Ross Barkley has Nigerian Decent, born in England to a Nigerian Father and English mother, but the player has since played for the Three Lions because his mother Dianne is English. His parents are divorced which played a huge part in him deciding which country he will represent. After the divorce of his parents, Ross was with his mother and bore her surname and that was how Nigeria seemingly lost him! He was eligible to play for Nigeria but he has now gone into history books as one of those who got away.

AM- Deli Alli

Tottenham Hotspur star Dele Alli has Nigerian blood running through his veins. Full name, Bamidele Alli, the supremely talented midfield prodigy regretfully plays for England and not Nigeria. He made his debut against Estonia, coming on as a late substitute.

On 17 November 2015, Alli made his first start for the England senior team, scoring the opening goal from a long range shot to beat Spurs team-mate, goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in a 2-0 win against France at Wembley Stadium.

LW - Bukayo Saka

The Arsenal rising star is another Nigerian to come out of the Gunners academy, born September 5th 2001, he has played for England in all grade levels and is part of the U2 set up for England. With so much talent at his disposal Nigeria still have a shot on claiming Saka from England, hopefully he sees enough reason to pledge his international career to the Eagles.

RW-Jordan ibe

The ex-Liverpool winger has represented England at numerous youth levels and despite having already turned down an approach from the Nigerian FA, he could yet feature for them as he has yet to play for England. At just 23 years old he has plenty of time to grow from potential to something special and if the English FA don't come calling for him, he could yet make a U-turn and play for the Super Eagles.

ST- Tammy Abraham

Abraham was born in Camberwell, London to a Nigerian father and English Mother, Nigeria has always been vocal of wanting the Chelsea star to play for the Eagles, Abraham's father is close friends with Nigeria Football Federation President, Amaju Pinnick and on 21 September 2017, Pinnick claimed that Abraham had switched his allegiance to Nigeria. Abraham issued a statement the same day denying the claim and reaffirming his availability for England selection.

Abraham, finally got his England call up, he played for England as a late substitute in their 2-1 defeat to Czech Republic.

Other Notable names include

Gabriel Agbonlahor, Dennis Aogo, Sidney Sam, Ademola Lookman, Dominic Solanke, Ikechi Anya.


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