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Arteta: ‘Humble’ Saka Deserved England Call-Up

Arteta: ‘Humble’ Saka Deserved England Call-Up

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes Bukayo Saka fully deserved his maiden invitation to England’s senior national team.

Saka was named in England’s squad for upcoming matches against Wales, Belgium and Denmark by manager Gareth Southgate on Thursday.

“I’m extremely happy with him – he totally deserves that chance,” Arteta told the club’s official website.

Read Also: BB Naija Host Ebuka, Nigerian Fans React To Saka’s England Senior Team Call-up 

“He’s a really humble boy who’s willing to learn every single day.

“He works really hard and he has an incredible talent. It’s a combination of everything you need to be successful and I think that call-up is going to fill him with confidence even more, and I’m really happy for him.

“That ability, versatility and unpredictability that he gives to the team is special. As well, the way he reads the different situations in areas that we want to provoke during games and then also the personality that he plays with.

“He comes here to Anfield and he wants every ball, he works for every challenge and I think he put in a really good performance today.”

By Adeboye Amosu

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  • Coach Mikel Arteta is bang on the money by highlighting ‘versatility’ as the USP (unique selling point) of young vivacious winger Bukayo Saka as the youngster is set to embark on a national team career that will undoubtedly see him being booed anytime England face Nigeria.

    In 2018, Tottenham Hotspur playmaker Dele Alli could not escape the jeers and booes from Super Eagles fans who made their impressions of him known every time he touched the ball in their area.

    After apparently being encouraged by John Fashanu in 2015 to bolt his international football cart to the Nigerian stallion, Alli elected to kit for England. He has gone on to make an impressive 35 caps since then.

    Although Nigerian fans have refused to either overcome or forgive Alli’s snub (or treachery as some would want to make themselves believe), the 24 year old has enjoyed a decent England career having been to Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018.

    And it is to such a footstep that Saka will be hoping to not only emulate but also surpass. And he has all the attributes to do just that due to his dynamism, creativity, craft and most of all versatility.

    There was a time last season – around June time – when in Arsenal’s three Premier League games, Saka played on the left of a back four, the right of a front three and, and the against Brighton, on the left of a midfield three.

    That is amazing!

    To be flexible, pliable and moldable into different roles within a short space of time and still churn out pristine performances is the reason perhaps why Saka’s choice is Nigeria’s loss and England’s gain.

    But Nigeria did not lose for losing Saka (in my humble opinion); Nigeria lost for not paying adequate attention to youth football for indigenous players.

    I am in no doubt; Nigeria still produces players like Saka in abundance. Unfortunately, just like ripe fruits that fall off a tree and go rotten on the ground without being picked, our young indigenous players are being failed by a system that seemed designed only to help waste away their talents and potentials.

    The system in England and Arsenal produced Saka and it only seems fitting (and fair, I might add) that they benefit from the fruits of their investment and labour.

    As for Saka, if he continues to invest in himself, there is no reason why he cannot go on to be a seasoned England International like Dele Alli, Marcus Rashford, Danny Welbeck and Emil Heskey.

    Even none of those players exhibited the sort of versatility that Saka exudes.

    And as for Nigeria supporters, rather than boo or berate Saka, I think they should vent their anger on football administrators in the country who have created the sort of environment that makes it inimical for prospects like Saka to be discovered and to thrive.

  • @Deo That’s Because Nigeria is not making the effort.

    With regards To SAKA, if your Roots are African Represent Africa if you cry Black Lives Matter Prove it and Choose the Continent of your Roots. That being said he posted his Pride at being Called up by the Three Lions on the Same Days Nigeria’s Indepence which to me Paints many Pictures as to where his pride has always laid, so Good Reddens we wish him well but we don’t need him.

    Eze on the other hand has posted a Happy Independence Day to Nigeria on his IG Status yesterday, Meaning Patriotism dey him body for Naija.

    If Rohr only has to show effort and travel to meet with him like he was willing and did for Kevin Akpoguma. Give him reasons and his vision and mission he has for Eze in the Super Eagles. If he still says No then we can say the boy doesn’t want to.

    Let this not be a Repeat of David Alaba when he said He didn’t choose Nigeria because we just never approached him and NFF made it difficult for him. read and see that a Whole Superstar like David Alaba wanted to represent Nigeria before being called up by Austria.

    David Alaba Story of how NFF denied him playing

  • Eze has also come out to say he enjoyed training with the Nigeria under age Squad a year or so ago… So why the NFF and Rohr are not making Eze A priority especially when we need all the help and Strong competition we can get for that 10 role is worrisome.

    Seems to me like Rohr shows a preference Towards Nigerian players Franco German or Dutch decent

    • greenturf 10 months ago

      Why are you too bothered about this lad.It’s clear where his allegiance lies,we have good players in every position not that we are desperate.So any foreign born player willing to be part of the super eagles should show enthusiasm towards that course without much ado.

      We do not expect every foreign born footballer to be part of our national team but ones who are willing and have the abilities to improve the team are welcome.

      Saka’s decision as well that of Abraham and Tomori to opt for England was heartbreaking to many Nigerian football fans,though many tried hard to make it look like they not bothered with that shocking decision,but the truth is we were all let down and gutted so we have to prevent future occurrences.

  • Dr. Drey. 10 months ago

    ” Good Reddens we wish him well but we don’t need him…..” coming from the lips of the same person who has been calling everyone but himself a bastard, brain dead, dizzy and all sort of derogatory names for not going to prostrate at Saka’s feet to beg him to play for Nigeria. Now all of a sudden….”…we dont need him…” LMAO. By their fruits we shall know them….LMAO.

    Pls tell us what else we need to do for Eze to show him we want him to represent us…??? He was invited to train with the big boys when he was still a nobody…Maja and Ola aina were also part of that camp in 2017…today they have done their international switches and are SE players….Eze is not yet convinced. A whole NFF president went all the way to his house to have dinner with him and beg him…they even took a selfie afterwards…..Eze is not yet convinced. The whole of 2019 was almost dedicated to chasing EZE….from the NFF to Adelakun to Rohr himself…infact it is even in the public domain that our SE list for the qualifiers against Benin and Lesotho was delayed for eze to make a decision….Eze is not yet convinced. He prefered to go and sit on the bench of England U21 rather than a guaranteed spot in the Senior National team of NIGERIA….Eze is not yet convinced.

    Maybe we should go and be packing his shit in london before he will be convinced to play for Nigeria. Nonsense…!

    Anybody that is ready to play for Nigeria should pick up the phone and call the NFF and the Coach. Afterwards he should dust all his documents and go and submit to the FA in england and write a request for international switch…that is when we will take him serious. To hell with their twitter and Instagram nonsenses.


    • Chairmanfemi 10 months ago

      Perfect response to @Ugo. Thanks Drey.

      I immediately went to confirm what Ugo said as per Eze and truly I saw he posted A video of Aki’s comedy and wrote underneath “Happy Nigerian Independence” with a Nigerian flag. Meaning he has Nigeria in mind as a Plan B but his heart is all out for England National team. Nigeria has done everything to convince him yet he isn’t responding. Now he has accepted a call up to England U-21 again. Are this boys playing with our minds or what?

      Well, there’s a good news now. Rising Star-Left back Calvin Ughelumba Bassey has also acknowledged his Nigerian root by posting a Picture of Nigeria on his status yesterday wishing the Country a Happy Independence. This is another pointer now. The boy is still young and coming up in a Big club like Rangers…make NFF go for am now oo! Not when the Boy seals the No.3 spot at Rangers and now making waves in Europe that England and Italy eyes are on him that NIGERIA go begging again. Operation Catch them young is what Saka has taught us o.

      • Dr. Drey 10 months ago

        No mind am….maybe NEPA took light in his village when all those things were happening since 2017 when we have been chasing Eze. Maybe will have to hire a conference hall somewhere in london, invited delegates from FIFA, NFF, Sport Ministry and NASS and make a powerpoint presentation for Eze for us to “show enough effort”

        • @Dr Dre at Least I get Village, as for You I no even no if you get village or if dem born you well. Circus clowns like you with Mediocre minds that copy and paste stats from internet den come here and talk rubbish like some minister of football deceiving most of the forum mates here with the exception of true patriotic Nigerians like myself and a few others. You think say I get your time. lezie onwe gi anya ofuma guy.
          A Word is enough for the wise

          • Dr. Drey 10 months ago

            Hahahahaha……bloody bastard… your display of stupidity and mumuism don dey pain you, now wey I don scatter your fat lies with facts…LMAO
            E better make I copy facts form verifiable source come paste for here so that ignorant lunatics like you can get yourselves educated rather than coming here on daily basis to disgrace yourselves.

            You’ve just been spewing gutter from your mouth since morning on this Eze issue as if you were in coma since 2017 when we started chasing him. You some of your data to do some fact-finding before coming in public to behave like a rabied dog.

            If it is you senseless patriotism that is driving you, You can go and be packing Eze’s shit in London so that he can be convinced to play for Nigeria na…LMAO

    • @Dr Drey Yes it was well documented that Amaju Pinnick Flew to meet Eze and I am very much aware of that. I, even commented when CSN reported late last year I will not deny that.

      I also Know that Rohr did not follow up on Eze because he was a young lad at the time and playing in the English Championship and we all know Rohr (which even I will commend him for to a certain extent) doesn’t really give League 2 players in any league a sniff to his own detriment in a way because I will still say the English Championship is on par with some Premier Leagues in UEFA. let me not list them, I.e. Danish league etc. (FC MITJYLAAND- Onuachu old team)

      What I am doing is trying to alert Rohr’s attention back towards this matter because, believe me Eze has slipped his mind now. I can guarantee you only when Eze’s Momentum kicks in this season and he starts putting in Man of the Match Performances like we all know he will that’s when Rohr will want to now start competing with Gareth Southgate for EZE.

      Look at Eze start first game of the season in bench role and cemented his place immediately. by the second and third game we all saw it. Its only a matter of time before he is on Gareth Southgate plans again then it is too late, get him to commit now is what I am saying. Touch base with him again. That’s showing interest in a players plight

    • @Dr Drey

      it’s like you’ve forgotten the main agender of these people on this forum?
      They are looking for fault to use against Rohr period.

      Have they not been reading articles concerning this issue of EZE, SAKA et all dual players on soccer site?

      Must we go & beg little boys to come & play for their fatherland?

      Did england beg saka, abraham, tomori, ali, barkley b4 they turn up to play for them?

      To me, i prefer GERMAN, DUTCH, FRANCE borns to all these english borns that are prone to fizzling out just like their real english players.

      What excuse will SAKA, EZE, ABRAHAM, TOMORI give?
      That nigeria, nff, rohr didn’t come for them on several occassions?

      What was their response?

      Haters of Rohr pls let us grow up and leave this things.

      The case of ALABA, BARKLEY is clear, we never went for them on time.
      But for EZE, SAKA, ABRAHAM, IBE, TOMORI, ALI, LOOKMAN; i think they have no excuse to give bcos even a deaf, dump & blind man is aware of their case and the flimsy excuses they used to bargain with us.

  • Ikeben 10 months ago

    Someone, (Eze) that said recently in an interview woith Nedum Onuoha, that he regrets playing with Nigeria, that even Nedum had to caution him to be careful the words he says. Someone that Pinnick has been on his case, and he keep asking for more time to think. The ones that wants to go let them go, those willing to play for us are also very many.

  • @Ikeben that is a bloody lie and you know it. Don’t come here and Spew Rubbish Biko!. If you must Spew, please do so with Facts. Abeg I take god beg you.

    A word is enough for the wise!!

    • Dr. Drey 10 months ago

      It is a bloody lie….you that know the bloody truth with facts, ngwa say it and let us hear na.


      “…Eze said when he came to the Nigerian training camp in london in 2017, he thought that is where he wanted to be, but after playing for the England U21 team he began to think that HE MIGHT HAVE REGRETTED PLAYING FOR NIGERIA…”

      Read the link above and lets see who is really the Big rubbish spewing lair.

      • Oh Boy @Dr Drey I don tell you how many times say, Make you no dey come here with your Own goal Nigeria tory come begin dey force am for peson throat. Abeg make I hear word Jare… you and your own goal nonsense back to zenda egwuregwu guy, you and your Owngoal anuofia!!!!!

        • Dr. Drey 10 months ago

          Hahahhaa…na your own ignorance and stupidity wey you they always try force on us with insults naim make we dey swallow knawu..? Abi the Online Podcast wia Eze ya tin-god make the statement too na fake…??? Anumanu…!!

          • @Dr Drey e be like say na you be the Owngoal NAija domain administrator Naim make you dey always dey use owngoal as reference HAHAHA! No wonder NA only Nyash that domain dey Yab.. Abeg free me JAre… Egwuregwu Punk!!!!!!!!!!!!! Owngoal Nigeria my foot.

    • Dr. Drey 10 months ago

      It is a bloody lie….you that know the bloody truth with facts, ngwa say it and let us hear na.


      “…Eze said when he came to the Nigerian training camp in london in 2017, he thought that is where he wanted to be, but after playing for the England U21 team he began to think that HE MIGHT HAVE REGRETTED PLAYING FOR NIGERIA…”

      Read the link above and lets see who is really the Big rubbish spewing lair.

  • We nigerians are not helping the mater. 9ja is 2 big to beg a player to play for the super eagles. It is time to stop this nonsense. these players are not better than what we have for now. Tomori is not better than omeruo and ajayi. Abraham is not better than any of iheanacho. Osimen. Maja. Eze is not better than iwobi and nwakali. Nff and rohr should stop beging these guys they are not bigger than nigeria.

  • Ikeben 10 months ago

    Thanks Dr Drey, was just about to post the link. People just like to make loud noise without cross-checking. So we now know who is talking rubbish.

  • @Ugo Iwunze

    i hope you’re not @Omo9ja?

    Rohr should go for Eze, as in how?

    He should start it afresh again?

    He was invited in 2017 for a friendly wich eventually fail to hold.

    Pinnick even went for him on several occassions, our scout (ADELAKU) have been doing everything posible to convince this young man but he seems headbent with england…

    What should we do?

    Should we go and tie his 2 legs and 2 hands, put him in a plane and bring him to nigeria b4 u can see the effort of rohr on how to persuade this young man to play for 9JA?

    Nigeria sought for him when he was not even recorgnised or considered good enough for england underage football.

    Do you want rohr, nff, all our ministers in all the ministry, the governors & our president to go and talk to your world best EBERECHI MESSI RONALDO MANE SALAH EZE?


  • Take it or leave it, no human being who’s privileged to have tasted an European organisation would want to come and experience the rubbish that goes on in 9ja. A single appearance for an European national team gives you an entitlement for the rest of your life. Even your 1985 Golden eaglet members are yet to get whatever was promised them since 35 years ago. No sane player will pick Nigeria over England except mumu like you people. “WHO NO LIKE BETA THING”?.