FULHAM centreback Tosin Adarabioyo and Southampton striker Nathan Tella have both been cleared by Fifa to play for Nigeria’s Super Eagles in the forthcoming African Nations Cup qualifiers.
Adarabioyo, 23, who recently joined Fulham on a three year deal was born to a Nigerian father and English mother and has 15 caps for England youth teams. Adarabioyo was under contract to Manchester City but last season was loaned out to English Championship side Blackburn Rovers where he featured in 34 league games and got three goals.
Highly regarded by Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola as an integral part of the future of the team, Adarabioyo left, however, in search of first team football. Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr has been after Adarabioyo for a while now and it appears that the centreback has now agreed to play for Nigeria.
Apparently, Fifa have just given him the all-clear to feature for the Super Eagles as all his games for the England youth team were friendlies. It is now expected that Rohr will call him up for Nigeria’s Nations Cup double header against Sierra Leone next month when the Eagles will face the Lone Stars home and away.
Although Nigeria is not short of centrebacks, not many of them are playing top flight football at the moment. Skipper William Ekong plays for Watford in the English second division, while Kenneth Omeruo plays for Leganes in the Spanish second tier, with Chigozie Awaziem playing with Boavista in the lowly Portuguese league.
Leon Balogun has enjoyed a bit of a resurgence since joining Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers but apart from the fact that he is 32, he does not see regular action with the club. At the moment, only Semi Ajayi at West Bromwich Albion and Kevin Akpoguma of Hoffenheim in Germany’s Die Bundesliga are seeing regular top flight football.
Tella, 21, for his part was always free for Nigeria as he has not been capped by England at any level. After spending 10 years with Arsenal as a youngster, he had spells at Reading and Norwich City before joining Southampton in April 2017 for whom he has made three appearances this season.