One of the highest exporters of talented footballers in the entire Africa is the Nigeria national team. They have actually produced different top players who are currently making waves in different countries and leagues. Some Nigerian players who claim to be wise enough have nationalised themselves to play for other national teams. Some are playing in other countries due to their place of birth, the place they grew up or dual nationality. Although some players who were born and brought up in Nigeria have also refused to play for the country due to some reasons. Out of the several Nigerian footballers who are playing in different European, American and Asian countries, below are the best among them.
1. Thomas Lemar
Among the players of Nigerian descent who are playing in other countries, one of the best is Thomas Benoît Lemar. He is a French professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Spanish club Atlético Madrid and the France national team. He is known for his versatility, being able to play on both wings and through the centre. He has been praised severally for his dribbling and passing ability.
He is a versatile midfielder able to play on both wings as well as through the centre and in a free role. He is predominantly left footed, but is also competent with his right foot. He is noted for his excellent dribbling skills, strong passing ability and free kicks. He has said that he prefers to link-up with teammates, rather than taking on defenders. He always try to avoid duels and concentrate on passing as much as possible and often attempt to score from long range.
He was born in France to parents of Nigerian origin. History holds that his grandfather played for the Nigeria national team before he retired. He is eligible to play for Nigeria as well as France. He choosed to represent France and has played for them at every level from U17 to U21, and made his international senior debut in 2016 against the Ivory Coast. He was a member of the team that won the 2018 FIFA World Cup, also featuring at UEFA Euro 2020.
2. Tammy Abraham
It is of no doubt about the fact that Tammy Abraham ranks as one of the best player of Nigerian origin playing for a foreign country. He is an English professional footballer who plays as a striker for Serie A club Roma and the England national team.
Formerly an England youth international, he represented the nation from under-18 level, and featured at the 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship in Poland. He made his senior debut in November 2017
Prior to receiving his first competitive cap for the England senior team in October 2019, he was eligible to represent Nigeria through his paternal lineage and was sounded out by the Nigerian Football Association.
3. Ross Barkley
Another great Nigerian player who refused to represent the country at the international level is Ross Barkley. He is an English professional footballer who plays as an attacking midfielder for Premier League club Chelsea. He was born in Liverpool, Merseyside to parents of Nigerian descent.
After he signed for Chelsea in 2018, he won the FA Cup in 2018 and UEFA Europa League in 2019. He made his debut for the England national team in 2013. He played for England at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and was selected in Roy Hodgson's 23-man squad for UEFA Euro 2016 but did not appear in any of England's matches.