Proposed FIFA Rule On Nationality Switch Could See Nigeria Pay England For Iwobi, Aina

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FIFA is currently looking into several options in their bid to effect changes to the rules guiding players nationality switch after representing another country at junior level.

Head of FIFA stakeholders committee Victor Montagliani confirmed they are looking into the rule, which currently forbids players who have played a competitive international for one ‎team from switching to another national side even when they hold dual nationality.

Already the Cape Verde football federation has proposed for the rule to be relaxed especially when the player has only featured in few games, say one or two games for his original side, but has no chance of earning a recall.

However FIFA only allow players to represent a country with no blood relation if they have played and lived there for five years, a rule which Montagliani said could be review into changing the period probably extending it.

The other option the Montagliani lead committee are looking at is a compensation scheme in cases where a player goes through the training system of one country and represent it at youth level before switching to another.

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Presently Nigeria have two players who have represented England at youth level in Alex Iwobi and Ola Aina representing them, and if the new rule go through, England could be entitled to some compensation from Nigeria.

Michael James