Arsenal academy star Folarin Balogun has admitted he hasn’t decided whether he’s going to play for England, the USA or Nigeria internationally.
Balogun, 17, is having a fantastic season with the academy. He recently scored his 21st goal of the season to add to seven assists in all competitions. That’s mostly for the u18s, although he did score his first u23 goal of the campaign recently despite only playing 84 minutes in total for the top youth side.
As a result, the question of the teenager’s international allegiance is starting to garner increased interest. He addressed the issue speaking to the Arsenal matchday programme for Thursday’s match against Rennes.
“I haven’t yet declared who I will commit to internationally,” Balogun began. “I was born in New York, so can play for the USA. My parents were born in Nigeria and I have been in England since I was two years old, so I can play for both those countries too!
“I have several youth caps playing for England and I enjoy their style of play which is similar to Arsenal’s. I will be discussing matters with my parents and will then decide.”
As he mentions, Balogun has already played a number of matches for England’s youth teams. At the moment he’s in the u18s, and he’s received another call-up to that side for the international break this month.
However, the striker has also already featured for the United States u18s. He played in four matches last August, scoring two goals, which seemingly then sparked England to promote him to their own u18 team, having previously only used him at u17 level. Nigeria would be wise to make their case sooner rather than later to avoid missing out.
To watch Balogun in action, check out this compilation of the highlights of his season so far: