Lookman: Selecting Super Eagles Was A ‘Tough Decision’ But Nigeria Is Not New To Me
The 24-year-old discusses the team’s goals and how he intends to reclaim support after missing out on a World Cup ticket. Nigerian winger Ademola Lookman has revealed that choosing between playing for the Super Eagles and England at international level was a “difficult decision.” The 24-year-old was approved by Fifa earlier this year to switch allegiance and play for the West African nation, despite having previously represented England at the youth level.
Lookman, who features for Premier League club Leicester City, on loan from Bundesliga club RB Leipzig, and is currently with the Super Eagles in Abuja preparing for their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying fixture against Sierra Leone and Sao Tome Principe, has shed light on how tough it was to make the decision. “It was a tough decision,” Lookman said as quoted byCompletesports. “A decision I had to make because obviously, it was my country’s call. “My parents are Nigerians and I came to Nigeria a lot of times growing up and Nigeria wasn’t new to me. Being around the coach, players and people wasn’t strange. “Making decisions wasn’t a tough decision in terms of knowing where I was going. Coming into the team, the squad has been great and everyone has been very receptive and welcoming. I love this group and the people.” The winger has also discussed the possibility of scoring his first goal for the Super Eagles soon as they prepare to take on the Leone Stars in their Group A opener at home. “I hope to endear myself to Nigerians by playing well and winning as many games and laurels,” added Lookman. “My first goal will be coming soon and hopefully I will score plenty in the future. “At the moment I want to enjoy playing and the goals will come. Nigerians will love us again with time.” On their fixture against Sierra Leone, Lookman said: “As I said earlier, we want to win this game and the next. The weather is okay and we have to make amends by beating Sierra Leone here first, then off to Morocco for the next game [vs Sao Tome & Principe].” Lookman has further revealed the feeling and disappointment which followed after the Super Eagles failed to make it to the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar.
“The feeling was bad, it was of disappointment, frustration, and shock, but like they say, ‘time heals over time’. I have put it behind my mind now and moved on. We have the Afcon qualifiers coming up and we are looking forward to win both games,” Lookman concluded. After playing against the Leone Stars, Nigeria will travel to Morocco to face Sao Tome at Stade Adrar on June 13.