Should Rohr Relent In The Zirkzee Pursuit?


Whichever way you want to look at it, it is highly unlikely that Russian born Brian Idowu would have attended a Fifa World Cup whilst the chances of Ola Aina ever kitting for England is remote at best. Yet, at of the time of typing the Southwark born full back is already an Africa Cup of Nations bronze medallist.


Speaking as part of efforts to lure Holland-born German-based Forward Joshua Zirkzee to play for Nigeria, coach Gernot Rohr said: "There is hope for them (dual nationality players)" said Rohr. "And if they want to play in the World Cup and AFCON with us they are welcome."


It must be recalled that after becoming a Nigeria International, the club fortunes of dual nationalities players often see remarkable upturn: Idowu signed for Lokomotive Moscow, Ebuehi signed for Benfica while Ola Aina's move to the glamorous Italian league coincided with him becoming a Super Eagles International (having been loaned to the English Championship severally) .


Now, I hear that young Nigerian goalkeeper from Germany Maduka Okoye is potentially on the cusp of leaving Sunday league football for the big time in a higher division league which leads me to think that who needs who?


No player has ever seen their fortune dwindle after representing the Super Eagles.


These players need the Super Eagles of Nigeria just as much as our national team needs them.


So, as much as it is a good idea to lure the best legs to play for Nigeria, the Super Eagles is such a premium self sufficient brand that we should never be seen 'plead' with anyone to play for Nigeria.


"They (dual nationality players) must give us the sign to come; they are welcome but they must decide, " said Gernot Rohr which I wholeheartedly endorse.


The approach to this matter must be structured: reach to a dual nationality player, give them a reasonable time to respond, accept their response (if either lukewarm or no) and move on. If the truth be told, I strongly believe that it is possible for Nigeria to put out a team with just a handful of dual nationality players (like in the days of Odewingie and Victor Moses) and still be hugely successful - so I don't know why we seem to have become very desperate all of a sudden.


19 year old Zirkzee is a promising talent no doubt. He plays for mighty Bayern Munich in the German Bundesliga where he has scored no less than an impressive 3 goal in at least 7 games.


If he elects to hitch his wagon to the Super Eagles star, fine, if not, the national team will still go places and achieve things with those willing and passionate to put on the Green White Green.


As Rohr puts it, this is a team that is a always a contender for Afcon trophies and World Cup participation (with the realistic possibilities of reaching the quarter finals).


The choice is theirs.

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