Super Eagles’ and Nottingham Forest’s dynamic defender, Ola Aina, has expressed his resolute contentment with his decision to represent Nigeria on the international stage rather than his birthplace, England. Aina, who possesses remarkable versatility as a full-back, either on the right or left, firmly believes he made the right choice by donning the Super Eagles jersey.
Born in England to Nigerian parents and nurtured through Chelsea’s prestigious Cobham academy, Aina once donned England’s youth colors.
However, when he reached the age of 18 or 19, he found himself less frequently included in England’s setup, despite making strides at Chelsea.
Simultaneously, the call from the Nigerian national team beckoned, providing him with the opportunity to switch allegiances.
Aina seized the chance and swiftly became a fixture in the Super Eagles, forging a strong bond with Nottingham’s formidable striker, Taiwo Awoniyi.
Speaking on The Beautiful Game Podcast, Aina explained, “I just thought I wasn’t going to get called up anymore. At the time, the Nigeria national team called me, and it was the first team as well, so it was a good opportunity for me. I just felt it was right.”
Proud to represent Nigeria, Aina looks ahead to an even brighter future with the Super Eagles, stating, “There’s no regrets about it. I have a lot of caps now. The only way is up, hopefully.”
Aina, alongside Awoniyi, eagerly anticipates the 2024 AFCON tournament in Ivory Coast, where they could vie for their first senior team trophy with Nigeria.