IKENWA NNABUOGOR warns that Super Eagles could lose Crystal Palace exciting midfielder Eberechi Eze to the Three Lions, just as they did Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka..
The interests from the camps of the Super Eagles and Three Lions of England continue to gather momentum as Crystal Palace young midfielder Eberechi Eze refuses to slow down.
Eze only exchanged club colours this season, but remained in London with the Eagles and continues to prove he could crack it with the Premier League club just he did with Queens Park Rangers in the lower rungs.
Eze would grab his exalted place in the Palace’s midfield after a slow start after switching from the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium and continues to cement his place in coach Roy Hodgson’s side with commensurate assured performances.
Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has had the youngster catch his eye at QPR and wanted him in the team, but the London-born star was neck-deep with the England U21s extending his nationality switching process as well as having to mature better with time.
Eze’s maturity was as swift as a forgone conclusion and the youngster is already enjoying the pecks of his peak as England are also monitoring his progress with keen interest.
Still only 21, and not a finished business yet with the England U21s, his impending switch to the Three Lions might as well be another forgone conclusion as manager Gareth Southgate has not hidden his love for the star whose parents hail from Nigeria.
Could this mean Super Eagles stand little chance of having Eze switch allegiance and star for the country of his parents?
Do Rohr and Nigeria have what it takes to grab him from the noses of England, who are also very interested in this exciting midfielder?
Or as it’s right now, are we finally losing him to England?
The extent to which the Nigeria Football Federation have gone in having Eze switch nationality remains unclear, but the race to land the midfielder will surely go down to the wire.
England’s growing interest continues to be fueled with his breath-taking performances with the Eagles and transition from the England U21s to the full international team will certainly not need any protocol.
Just an official invite by Southgate will ultimately settle this puzzle and the Super Eagles will become second-time losers just as was the case of Saka.
But the ultimate choice lies with the player – if his neck is stuck out for Nigeria, the losers this time will be England.
But truth be told, with the commanding influence of Eze in Palace’s midfield and the general team play, it will take some damning guts of Southgate to let Nigeria have Eze.
Who wouldn’t want to have Eze in his team?
He’s every coach’s delight, Hodgson has been singing like a cheerful canary lately and still only 21, Eze has no business not to continue improving and grabbing the headlines for the right reasons.
A chance with the Eagles will be made in heaven as he would walk straight into the middle of the park to breathe the much-needed life into the Eagles spluttering engine-room.
But with the Three Lions, he will not stroll into the park like an unchallenged ranger as he would have to battle his way up.
The onus lies on him where to pitch his tent and wherever he’s worth it and it will only be as good as it gets for him.
His stocks will continue to rise nevertheless and he will definitely buzz the transfer market.
Rohr and indeed millions of Eagles fans will be the happier to have Eze ahead of the preying Three Lions.