Gareth Southgate sends a message to Folarin Balogun
England manager Gareth Southgate insists he will not give a player his debut for the national team just to stop him from playing for another nation.
He made this statement while reacting to calls for him to make Folarin Balogun a part of his squad as the Arsenal striker shines on loan at Reims in France.
Balogun has been one of the finest English players in Europe this season and several clubs have an interest in his signature.
However, England still does not consider the attacker good enough for their senior side.
Balogun can also play for Nigeria and the United States of America, which should make the Three Lions eager to add him to their group.
However, Southgate has urged him to be patient and wait for his time. The England manager said via the Daily Mail:
‘We like Flo. He has obviously not had an opportunity in the Premier League yet, so we have to weigh up those goals to Ivan [Toney], for example, or Ollie Watkins. Or Eddie Nketiah, who has done really well with the opportunity he has had at Arsenal.
‘I know there are going to be offers as 80 per cent of our players can play for more than one country now, and we are not arrogant expecting everybody to want to come to play for England. We have to make them feel wanted and feel part of that.’
Just Arsenal Opinion
Balogun has been in terrific form this term, which is why there are calls for him to be handed his national team debut.
However, Ligue 1 is not as tough as the Premier League and he might need to shine in the English top flight before he is taken seriously.
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