Dutch Born Nigerian Star Receives 1st Call Up to Netherlands After Showing Interest in Super Eagles

Dutch Born Nigerian Star Receives 1st Call Up to Netherlands After Showing Interest in Super Eagles

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
March 2, 2024 at 6:10 AM
In this article:
Joshua Zirkzee logo
J. Zirkzee
Bologna logoFNetherlands logo
Netherlands logo
Netherlands
Netherlands
23
Nigeria logo
Nigeria
Nigeria
21
Bologna logo
Bologna
Italy
32
Super Eagles logo
Super Eagles
South Africa
  • Johsua Zirkzee has received his maiden Dutch call-up
  • He was eligible to play for both Nigeria and Netherlands
  • The 22-year-old has been in explosive form this season

Dutch-born footballer of Nigerian descent, Joshua Zirkzee, finally earned his first call-up to the Netherlands national team shortly after discussing the potential circumstances under which he could represent the Super Eagles.

Zirkzee, whose mother is Nigerian and father is Dutch, recently spoke about the possibility of playing for the West African powerhouse.

Joshua Zirkzee, Bologna, Netherlands, Nigeria, call-up, Super Eagles
Dutch-born youngster Joshua Zirkzee could have represented Nigeria at senior level. Photos by David Ramirez/BSR Agency and Emmanuele Ciancaglini/Ciancaphoto Studio.
Source: Getty Images

Zirkzee receives his first Dutch call-up

However, the likelihood of him switching allegiance to represent his mother's country has decreased following his inclusion in the Dutch men's senior national team by head coach Ronald Koeman.

The former Bayern Munich forward drew Koeman's attention after an impressive season with Bologna, where he scored 10 goals and provided 6 assists in 28 appearances across all competitions, as noted by Transfermarkt.

According to Daily Sport, the ex-Barcelona boss has named the 22-year-old in his provisional squad of 30 players for the national team's upcoming friendly matches against Scotland and Germany during the international break this month.

Despite having played competitive matches for the Dutch at the U17, U19, and U21 levels, Zirkzee remained eligible to represent Nigeria.

Zirkzee's thoughts on representing Nigeria

With his inclusion in the Dutch national team's provisional squad for the friendlies, it seems unlikely that he will opt to play for the 2023 AFCON runners-up.

This development somehow contrasts with Zirkzee's previous statement indicating his willingness to switch allegiance to Nigeria if he didn't receive a call-up to the Dutch senior national team.

"But my dream has always been the Dutch national team. And the European Championships are not necessarily a crossroads. Like, if that doesn’t happen, then I’ll look further," he said as quoted by Complete Sports.
"But my dream has always been the Dutch national team. And the European Championships are not necessarily a crossroads. Like, if that doesn’t happen, then I’ll look further."

Elijah Adebayo ready to play for Nigeria

Although Nigeria may not secure the services of Zirkzee, there is hope in potentially acquiring English forward of Nigerian heritage, Elijah Adebayo, who has been impressive with his performances for Luton Town in the Premier League this term.

In an interview with the Times, Adebayo expressed his desire to play for either Nigeria or England, stating that representing the Super Eagles would bring pride to his mother, Sports Brief reported.

Additionally, he mentioned his intention to visit Lagos, Nigeria, for the first time since his childhood.

Authors
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe photo
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe is a Ligue 1, Bundesliga, and La Liga editor with five-year experience. He previously worked with Sports Corna and 360SportsGH.
Tags
Nigeria