'Declan Rice, Grealish chose England over Ireland' - Pundit on the international future of Arsenal striker Obi-MartinPublished: December 09, 2023
The Athletic journalist Art de Roché, who covers Arsenal, has revealed that it would be a big blow to England if Arsenal wonderkid Chidozie Obi-Martin chooses to play international football for Denmark over England and Nigeria.
Born in Glostrup, Chidozie Obi-Martin, also known as Chido Obi, qualifies to play for the Flying Eagles and Olympic Eagles through his Nigerian father and has represented England's Young Lions at U16 level.
The 16-year-old is provisionally cap-tied to his country of birth, Denmark, having represented the Scandinavians in the European U17 Championship qualifiers but remains eligible to play for England and Nigeria until he plays a cap-tying game.
Obi-Martin was talk of the town last month after scoring a remarkable ten goals for Arsenal in an U16 game against Liverpool.
The English Football Association are exploring options of luring the tri-national center forward back to representing the Young Lions.
"Nations convincing players of dual nationality to select them is an aspect of international football that the public may not realize until it is too late," Art de Roché said to bold.dk.
"Often these decisions come down to which country the player most identifies with, and in recent years this has been both to England's advantage and disadvantage."
England won the race for dual national players Declan Rice and Jack Grealish who both played youth football for the Republic of Ireland, but missed out on Bayern Munich attacking midfielder of Nigerian descent Jamal Musiala.
"Declan Rice and Jack Grealish, who chose England over Ireland, are examples of one, while Jamal Musiala, who represents Germany, is an example of the other.
"Only Obi-Martin can say whether he feels more Danish or English, but the fact that he has played more consistently for Denmark should give an idea.
"I don't know if it's the right expression that England 'could lose' him if he doesn't choose England, but it could be a blow as it's unclear who will be the next generation center forward when Harry Kane's time is up past.
"Regardless, it will be a topic of debate that will be there for several years from now, " Art de Roché added.
Obi-Martin has played nine U17 international matches for Denmark, scoring seven goals.
Photo Credit : Instagram
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