Hull City defender Ola Aina has spoken of his desire to make the Super Eagles squad for the forthcoming 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
The Chelsea loanee, who has been an integral part of the Tigers’ campaign this season, communicated that he will feel so fulfilled if his feats at the Championship side grants him the opportunity to represent Nigeria at the impending Mundial.
“A World Cup at 21, that would be a big achievement,” Aina told Hull Daily Mail.
“To be in the squad would be a blessing. I’ve just got to work hard here to secure a place and leave a good impression every time. It would be an honour.
“I get the same pride representing Nigeria, probably a little bit more, just because it’s closer to my origins. It’s deeper if you know what I mean,” Aina added.
“I was honoured to play for England (at age-grade level) but as of now I’m super honoured to play for Nigeria. It’s a big nation and a privilege to play for them.”
The 21-year-old, who already has four caps for the three-time African champions, stated that he decided to switch allegiance to Nigeria ahead of his country of birth, England because of the persistent call-ups he got from the former as against the frequent snub by the Three Lions.
“I wasn’t getting selected as much and Nigeria have always been knocking on the door from an early age. That’s my ethnic origin and at the time I just thought I need to play for Nigeria. England wasn’t there so I just had to pick Nigeria. And it felt right, you know?” the former England youth international added.
“I think it’s the right decision for me. I enjoy it every time I go away. It’s a good bunch of lads and coaching staff. It’s always a good experience for me.”