According to a work put together by a leading African journalist based in the United Kingdom, the rise of Alex Iwobi with Nigeria has lead to so many stars born in England to switch allegiance to the country of their parents.
Bournemouth star Benik Afobe recently swapped any chance of representing England at senior level by opting for the Democratic of Congo, where his father hails from despite representing England at youth level.
Hot on the heels of his switch, Crystal Palace forward Wilfred Zaha who has represented England at senior level completed his switch to the Ivory Coast, while little known Arsenal forward Yasser Bennacer also did same by opting for Algeria ahead of England.
Robert Frank believes Iwobi’s career rise has rubbed off on other players of African heritage,as the 20 year old is fully established as an international despite representing England at a very young age.
” It’s the Iwobi’s effect, in the past players of African heritage rather play odd games for England than full time international career with an African country” Frank told Owngoalnigeria,com
” Ugo Ehiogu, Carlton Cole & Gabriel Agbonlahor all played odd games for England at the expense of a full time international career with Nigeria, but Iwobi has broken the trend.
” Very clear to see that these players now know that their international career can be massive with the land of their origin than the land of birth. Thanks to Iwobi”.