As Nigeria continue her drive to lure players with dual nationality to pledge their allegiance to the Super Eagles of Nigeria.
Owngoalnigeria.com takes a look at 11 talented players who could have been playing for the Nigeria senior national team but are now representing other countries.
Jonathan Ligali (Montpellier)
One area where Nigeria is well protected is in the area of goalkeppers. However Jonathan Ligali who keeps goal for French Ligue 1 side Montpellier is one who would have been another option for the Super Eagles.
Ligali was at a point in time under consideration by former Super Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh but the move didn’t materialise and the 25 year old who has already represented France at youth level will be hoping to make the step up to the senior team in the future.
Ola Aina (Chelsea)
The teen full back who is highly respected and regarded at Premiership club Chelsea is a full fledge England youth international. Although he could still play for Nigeria in the future. It appears he is for now focused on playing for England at senior level
David Alaba (Bayern Munich)
A big miss to Nigeria but one who still relates with his Nigerian roots, as seen in his wrapping his body in the flag of Nigeria after winning the UEFA Champions League with Bayern Munich.
He ranks high among the players who got away from the grasp of Nigeria. He currently captains the senior national team of Austria and he is widely regarded as one of the best left full back in the world.
Dennis Aogo ( Schalke 04)
The 29 year old left footed defender cum midfielder was initially keen on switching allegiance to Nigeria but FIFA rules on nationality switch stopped him. By the time the limitations that hindered him were removed he opt to represent Germany and turned down Nigeria thrice.
His decision to play for the country where he was given birth to paid off as he made the Germany team to the 2010 World Cup.
Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur)
Nigeria missed out on Alli who is now about the first name on the team sheet for Spurs in any game due to negligence, according to former England international John Fashanu.
Fashanu said he tried to get permission to speak with the teen during his formative years at MK Dons but he got no support from the then board of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
Now firmly established as a senior international. He recently removed his surname Alli from the back of his shirt to a more Nigerian name in Dele.
Angelo Ogbonna (West Ham)
Italy’s deputy centre back behind the fantastic trio of Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzagli and Giorgio Chellini. The power playing defender ironically made his debut for the Italian senior national team against Nigeria in a friendly game before the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
His uncle said in a recent interview that he proposed the defenders to the Nigerian set up during his early days at Torino but was given cold shoulders by those he spoke to regarding his abilities.
Brian Idowu (Amkar Perm)
Born in Russia to a Nigerian father. Idowu’s case is entirely different as despite his consistent display for Amkar Perm. He is yet to be called up by Nigeria or Russia at any level, the two nations he is eligible to represent.
Karim Onisiwo ( Mainz 05)
Just like David Alaba who plays for Austria. Onisiwo who plays in same team with Nigeria international Leon Balogun is also a national team player of Austria despite his Nigerian roots.
However the former Austria youth international, could yet switch allegiance to Nigeria as he has only played in a friendly game for Austria, way back 2015 in a game against Switzerland.
Ross Barkley (Everton)
Voiced out his Nigerian roots and willingness to play for Nigeria if called up years ago before breaking into the first team set up at Everton.
Now a fully established England international. Nigeria were slow in making their push for him particulary when he mentioned his Nigerian roots which was a secret before he let it out.
Emmanuel Sarki ( Wisla Krakov)
The former Nigeria youth international played at different levels for Nigeria (U-17,20 & 23) but never got to play for the Super Eagles, which forced him to switch allegiance to Haiti.
A former youth player of Chelsea. He joined the club alongside Mikel John Obi in 2004 but after successful loan spells. He failed to make the grades and was cut loose. He now plays for Haiti at senior level.
Sidney Sam (Schalke O4)
The dashing winger was quick to make up his mind about his international future sticking to play for the land of his birth Germany as opposed to Nigeria.
He progressed through the German youth set up to the main team and made the provisional 30 man list of the German team that won the World Cup in 2014.