David Adiele, Reuben Agboola, Efan Ekoku, George Abbey and Efe Sodje are former Nigerian players born outside the shores of Nigeria but who chose to represent their country of origin.
Recently the likes of Alex Iwobi, Leon Balogun, William Troost Ekong, Victor Moses, Joe Aribo, Bryan Idowu and Tyronne Ebuhehi decided to represent Nigeria despite spending most of their years in another country.
Just last week, Belgian-born Cyriel Dessers was handed a first call-up by Gernot Rohr for the Super Eagles clash against Sierra Leone – although it has now been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Since Nigeria played her first international match in 1949, many players with dual citizenship have represented the country.
Dessers is the latest, but he won’t be the last. As a result, Soccernet takes a look at some of today’s current players who have dual nationality but are eligible to play for Nigeria through their parents.
Karim Onisiwo: Born in Vienna, Austria, Karim Onisiwo qualifies to play for Nigeria through his father, who is a Nigerian. The 27-year-old started his career with Favoritner AC Youth, but currently plays for Bundesliga side, Mainz 05.
He has scored four goals and provided six assists in 24 appearances for Die Nullfünfer this season. He plays as a centre-forward with a height of 1.88m
Onisiwo is a married man and has a child. Although he has spent all his life in Austria, he has not featured for the senior national team which makes him still eligible for the Super Eagles.
Noah Joel Sarenren Bazee: Bazee was born in Germany to a Nigerian father and a German mother. The 23-year-old started his career with JFC Allertal Youth. He currently plays for Augsburg and has made two appearances for them this season.
Bazee is a right-winger, but can also play behind the striker. He has already switched his international allegiance to Nigeria.
Sebastian Osigwe: Osigwe was born in Switzerland, but he has already declared his intentions to represent Nigeria according to Kick 442.
He started his career with Luzern youth side but plays for SC Kriens in the Swiss second division. He plays as a goalkeeper and already has eyes set on the Super Eagles number one spot for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Felix Agu: Agu was born in Osnabrück, Germany. He started his career with his city club’s youth team, and currently plays for their first team in the German second division.
However, he will be playing top-flight football next season after signing a deal with Werder Bremen. Agu has featured two times for Germany’s U-21 side, but he is still eligible to play for Nigeria as he is yet to feature for Germany’s senior national team.
Kevin Akpoguma: Another player of Nigerian descent born in Germany. Akpoguma was born in Neustadt an der Weinstraße, Germany to a Nigerian father and a German mother.
The 24-year-old’s career started with FC Neureut 08 youth team. He currently plays for Hoffenheim who signed him permanently from Hannover 96 last year after spending the previous season on loan.
He plays as a centre-back and has featured 15 times for Die Kraichgauer this campaign. Akpoguma has represented Germany at all levels except the senior national team.
He has always expressed his desire to represent Die Mannschaft which means it’s highly unlikely he gets to feature for the Super Eagles.
Jordan Torunarigha: Born in Chemnitz, Germany, Jordan is the son of former Nigerian footballer, Ojokojo Torunarigha.
Like most players, Torunarigha started his career with his City Club’s youth team. He currently plays for Hertha Berlin and has featured 12 times this season, scoring two goals.
The 22-year-old has represented Germany at all levels aside from the national team. However, he has expressed his desire to represent Joachim Low’s side.
Joshua Zirkzee: The Bayern Munich star was born in Schiedam, Netherlands, but his middle name, Orobosa suggests his origin is from Benin, Nigeria.
Zirkzee started his career with Spartaan ’20 youth, before joining Ado Den Hagg youth team. He moved to Feyenoord in 2016 before Bayern snapped him up a year later.
He graduated to Bayern’s first team this season, and he has been a revelation. He has made eight appearances for the Bavaria giants, scoring four goals.
He is rated highly at Allianz Arena, and shouldered some of the goalscoring responsibilities in the 6-0 win over Hoffenheim with Lewandowski out injured.
Ebere Eze: Eze was born in Greenwich, England to Nigerian parents. He is one of the stars in the English Championship this season.
He currently plays for QPR in the English Championship. He has scored 12 goals and provided eight assists for the Hoops this campaign.
His performances have seen him being linked with Tottenham who are the favourites for his signature. Although he has made two appearances for the England U-21 side, Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) president, Amaju Pinnick is making efforts to see that he commits his international future to the Super Eagles.
Eze has trained with the Super Eagles in the past, but he has asked for more time to decide his international allegiance. He has been compared to legendary Nigerian footballer, Austin Jay-Jay Okocha.
Ademola Lookman: Lookman was also born in England to Nigerian parents. He was part of the England U-20 side that won the World Cup in 2017.
He started his career with Charlton before Everton paid 10m pounds for his services in 2017. He was subsequently loaned to RB Leipzig, but on his return, he struggled for form at Goodison Park.
With him struggling at Everton, he was once again loaned to Leipzig in 2018 before he was signed permanently last year.
However, despite the move, he failed to recapture his old form and has been limited to just eight appearances this campaign.
Although Lookman represented England at youth levels, he has switched his international allegiance to Nigeria.
Ovie Ejaria: Like Eze, Ovie Ejaria was also born in England to Nigerian parents. He is currently on loan at Reading from Liverpool. He was also part of the England U-20 squad that won the World Cup in 2017.
Although he has represented England at youth levels, Ejaria looks set for Nigeria after Super Eagles manager Gernot Rohr reportedly urged the NFF to make a move for him.