'It's not true' - Ex-Germany youth teamer Torunarigha claims that he did not snub Super EaglesPublished: September 08, 2023
Former Germany youth international Jordan Torunarigha has sensationally claimed he did not reject an opportunity to play for Nigeria in the past and has vowed to put in his best to ensure the Super Eagles win their last 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying match.
In truth, the KAA Gent central defender turned down the chance to represent Nigeria at the 2018 World Cup as he previously harbored the ambition to become a full Germany international.
Former Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr and his scouting team were scouring Europe for a left-footed centre-back ahead of the tournament in Russia, and had Torunarigha and another German-born player Felix Uduokhai on their radar.
Having failed to achieve his dream of winning a senior cap for his country of birth and the fact that he was no longer considered a young talented player, the 26-year-old Torunarigha activated his backup plan - playing international football for the three-time African champions.
Few months after Fifa approved his change of association from Germany to Nigeria, Torunarigha received his first senior call-up for an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against São Tomé and Príncipe.
"It's my first call-up, get some playing time maybe and to show the fans who are criticizing me for denying Nigeria but it is not true. I want to make them feel happy and give them something back," Torunarigha told the Super Eagles Media Team.
"They should expect a hungry young guy who wants to show the world what he can do. I'm not that young but I'm still young as a player.
"I want to show everybody who criticized me before that I'm here to help the team, to give everything for the country and make Nigerians proud."
Torunarigha revealed that he has been welcomed by the Super Eagles players and spoke of the differences between the Nigerian and German national team set-up.
"It's really nice to meet the players, all of them are nice. They accepted me and it's nice to train with big players like Osimhen and Chukwueze, it's nice to see them training.
"It's a little bit different, like in Germany everything is strict. For example, you cannot go to meetings with flip-flops, you have to wear normal shoes.
"Here it is a little bit easier, you can go with flip-flops and everything is having fun. German people are more organized and strict.
"The captain Troost-Ekong helped me but also Collins, they are the players that helped me find my spot in the team," he added.
Jordan's dad, Ojokojo Torunarigha represented the Nigerian national team before hanging up his boots.
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