Ghana’s chances of convincing Eddie Nketiah to play for the Black Stars has been thwarted after receiving his first call-up to the England national team.
The 24-year-old has been selected by Gareth Southgate to be part of the England squad for their upcoming UEFA Euro qualifiers against Ukraine, as well as a friendly match against Scotland. This decision comes after a strong start to the season, during which he scored two goals in three matches for Arsenal.
Despite his involvement in England’s youth teams, Nketiah is still eligible to play for Ghana.
In June last year, Nketiah confirmed discussions with Ghana over a potential nationality switch, expressing his openness to both England and Ghana.
“Being from Ghana, you would be happy that they qualified for the World Cup,” he said.
His international future gains additional complexity due to the recently revised FIFA regulations pertaining to changing national teams.
Three new exceptions have been introduced, allowing a player to change their international allegiance if they fulfill specific criteria, which include;
-If the player held the nationality of their new association at the time of their first official appearance for their first national team.
– the player has not played in the final stage of an official tournament such as the World Cup, European Championship, AFCON, Copa America etc.
– at least three years have passed since the player’s last senior appearance for their previous national team.
The updated rules bring about a flexible environment for choosing international players, permitting strategic changes depending on eligibility and situations.
Although Eddie Nketiah’s initial call-up to the England national team confirms his current dedication, the complex interaction of eligibility regulations implies that chances for changing allegiance might still exist if circumstances change.