Man United star reveals why snub England for Nigeria

Naija Players Abroad By: Ikponmwosa Umweni | 02/04/2018

Manchester United Under 23 player, Tosin Kehinde reveals why he snubbed the opportunity to play for England and instead will pursue an international career with Nigeria.

The 19-year-old was born in Lagos but has been raised in the United Kingdom and is therefore eligible for both countries.

Kehinde and his representatives held talks with Nigeria Football Federation Vice President Shehu Dikko, Secretary General Mohammed Sanusi, and manager Gernot Rohr at the Super Eagles Crowne Plaza Hotel in London before the national team's friendly against Serbia.

"Nigeria has always been a part of me," United academy graduate Kehinde told the BBC.

"I was born there. My whole family are Nigerian. I come from a very strong Nigerian background so the influence has always been around me.

"When you are growing up, when you see players like Jay Jay Okocha, how good he was and the current crop of players such as Alex Iwobi and Super Eagles captain, Mikel, the desire to get the opportunity to play for Nigeria has always been there really."

Kehinde played with Marcus Rashford, Axel Tuanzebe, and Timothy Fosu-Mensah in the Uefa Youth League two seasons ago before he was promoted to the Reserves.

"I hope to play in the first-team, that's every player's dream and my dream also," Kehinde added. "The manager's continued belief in the youth and giving people opportunity has made me feel that if I keep working hard maybe I can get the opportunity as well."

Kehinde trained with the United first-team earlier this season and has started 15 times for the Under-23s in the Premier League 2. His strike at Chelsea in September was nominated for the club's goal of the month competition.