Chelsea’s Fikayo Tomori and Tammy Abraham have snubbed Nigeria after rejecting representing their country of origin in men’s football games.
Instead they would be representing a secondary country, England, which has wasted no time to call up the duo for the Euro 2020 qualifiers in the Czech Republic and Bulgaria.
Tomori, a central defender, has been called up for the first time.
Gareth Southgate, England Coach, said of Tomori: “His profile as a defender fits with the way international football is. Athleticism is important; he is capable with the ball. We think it’s a good opportunity to have a closer look at him.”
Tomori and Abraham are also eligible to play for Nigeria and, in the defender’s case, Canada but Southgate said he would not use them in a competitive game to close that door.
“I don’t think it’s ethically right to select someone just to make sure he can’t play for somebody else,” England’s manager said.
“Fik and Tammy are in on merit. They’ve both been part of our youth system. Fik came in a bit later but he was part of the team that won the (Under-17) World Cup – as far as we’re concerned they’re English players.”
Southgate said Abraham, who has two caps and has scored eight goals in his past 10 Chelsea games, had “really grasped this opportunity at the start of the season.”
The duo waited for call up to Nigeria’s Super Eagles but never came. The two Chelsea players have been in irrepressible form with Abaraham scoring scoring goals with reckless abandon.