Imoh Ezekiel was at a time better favoured to play for Belgium than Divock Origi, according to the mentor of the former Nigeria U23 star.
Ezekiel turned heads in Belgium between 2012 and 2014 when he fired 31 goals in all competitions for Standard Liege.
The owner of the club who sold the striker to Standard Liege has now revealed Ezekiel was in pole position to play for the Red Devils on the back of his goals at his Belgian goals.
“I was bent on him playing for Belgium then because he was considered ahead of Origi,” disclosed Hajji Gafar, owner of 36 Lion of Lagos, who started out Ezekiel.
“But the general secretary of the NFF then (Musa Amadu) called me and I had no choice than to be patriotic.
“I will never stop being a patriotic Nigerian.”
Ezekiel will go on to make his Super Eagles debut in a friendly against Mexico in March 2014.
He also featured at the 2016 Rio Olympics in Brazil, where Nigeria placed third.