England national team manager Gareth Southgate answered questions from the media on how he convinced Bukayo Saka to represent the country of his birth after being approached by Nigeria.
The 19-year-old Arsenal academy graduate who was born in London to Nigerian parents has represented the England national teams in all youth levels. He was tipped to switch his National alliance to Nigeria after being approached by the National team handlers of his parents origin.
However, Bukayo was handed his first call up to England senior team yesterday by Gareth Southgate ahead of their international friendly games next week. Most English supporters has shown their excitement on Saka’s invitation to the senior team set up as he is regarded as one of the most talented young star in Europe at the moment.
Southgate was questioned by the media on how he convinced Saka to represent the senior team of the English national team despite the advances of Nigeria national team handlers, and this is what the manager has to say “I’ve not talked to Bukayo about that. I think so many of our players are eligible for dual nationality, sometimes more than two countries, but we’ve been impressed with his progress through our system.
“I thought at times last year for Arsenal, really exciting. Still very young, still learning of course, but improving all the time. Real high potential, real quality. Everyone that’s worked with him tells me a real level headed intelligent boy.”
The new Arsenal number 7 (Saka) enjoyed a breakthrough season at the club last season having came through the club’s Hale End academy, He played a total of 26 games in the league for the club despite as the time being only 18 years.
Saka is highly rated at the club and was rewarded with a new 5-year-deal for his impressive performances for the club last season. He has also made three appearances for the club this season including one in the league so far. And was in action for about 80 minutes last night as Arsenal knocked out Liverpool from the Caraboa Cup by penalty shootout.