Nigeria is trying to prise PSV Eindhoven starlet Noni Madueke away from the England set-up, reports dailymail.co.uk.The 18-year-old former Tottenham forward is the latest target for Nigeria in its attempts to convince dual nationality English players to switch allegiances.
Madueke has played for England from under-16 up to under-19 level and has emerged as the latest British youngster to star abroad. But he is also eligible for Nigeria through his parents and they want to tempt Madueke by handing the teenager a senior international call up.
Madueke left Spurs to join PSV in June 2018 – rejecting Manchester United in the process – and impressed for their youth sides before making his senior debut last season.
This year looks set to be Madueke’s breakout campaign after his stunning start in the Eredivisie and Europe. The 18-year-old has represented England at youth level, in both the U16s and the U19s
Madueke has scored four times and set up four more goals in just 11 appearances. Only three of those appearances have been starts and he displayed his potential once again with a two-goal performance off the bench in PSV’s 4-0 win over Den Haag on Sunday.
Nigeria’s interest represents a dilemma for Madueke. While his form in Holland could earn him a promotion up the England youth ranks, perhaps to Aidy Boothroyd’s under-21s, Africa’s second-highest ranked nation want him for their first team now.
Nigeria’s readiness to fast-track talent has proved a successful approach and helped them persuade former England youngsters including Ola Aina, Alex Iwobi and Victor Moses to change who they represent at international level.
Madueke has previously explained that he snubbed United – Chelsea and Celtic were also interested – because Jadon Sancho has proven that English youngsters are now often better off abroad when seeking a breakthrough.
“[Sancho] has opened the eyes to other talents,’ he said. ‘A year after him, I went from Spurs to PSV. The plan that I had in mind then is now working out the way I intended it.
“In England, it is very difficult as a young talent to get into the first team, especially at the bigger clubs. The squads are very large and there is little room for youngsters. They often stay in reserve teams for a long time or are loaned out.
“There is little flow or chance to break through. That is completely different in the Netherlands.”