REVEALED: How Ghana President, Sports Minister, GFA Lobbied Hudson Odoi To Reject England
By Amaechi Agbo
The news of the change in allegiance from England to play for Ghana in his international football career by Chelsea star, Hudson Odoi did not come as a huge surprise to many, Bestchoicesports.com.ng can report
The 20-year old 2021 UEFA Champions League winner reportedly announced Monday that he would rather play for the Black Stars of Ghana than the Three Lions of England.
Following his England snub for the just concluded Euro 2020 Championship, Hudson-Odoi left the door open for a switch to Ghana when asked about the possibility.
“I think obviously when you’re young, you have the opportunity to play for England throughout all the years, from under 15 to under 16 all the way up,” the 20-year-old said last month while on holiday in Ghana.
“When they obviously gave me the opportunity to come, I was in the country already. It’s something that I already had in my mind, set on already playing for England.
“So it was the obvious thing, choosing Ghana or England, and at the end of the day, I said I always had the right people around me who always advise me – what’s right, what’s wrong. England came and I said ‘Yeah, let me go and play for my country’.
“But I said Ghana is my home as well, so we’ll see, we’ll see. You’ll never know.”
Odoi Meets With Ghana President
Shortly after his arrival in the country for holiday last month, he met Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo who urged the player to consider an international future with the Black Stars.
The President who confirmed the meeting in his official Twitter handle called on the sports minister to do everything possible to ensure that the prodigy switched his allegiance to okay for the Ghana senire national football team
“Ghanaian-born Chelsea footballer, Callum Hudson-Odoi, paid a courtesy call on me for Jubilee House, the seat of Ghana presidency.”
“Amongst others, I advise the Minister for Youth and Sports to explore every possibility of having Callum switch nationality, and play for the Black Stars,’ the president said.
Odoi who was born in England buy Ghanaian parents also held talks with the Ghana Football Association president, Kurt Okraku and Ghana Sports minister, Mustapha Ussif.
Hudson-Odoi would be able to represent Ghana in the future because he has not played more than three matches for the England senior national team – this is according to new FIFA rules.
The amtches he played for the England senior team were all before he turned 21 and would need to wait three years after his last call up by the Three Lions before he can make the switch to play for the Black stars.
Hudson-Odoi’s last match for England was on November 17 in 2019 which means he could make the application for the nationality switch on the same date in 2022, which would be shortly before the 2022 World Cup gets underway.
Ghana’s targets also include Brighton & Hove Albion defender Tariq Lamptey, Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah and Watford winger Kwadwo Baah
Odoi was among the first three Chelsea players to report to Cobham for their pre-season programe on Friday ahead of the 2021/2022 English Premier League season commencing from August 13, next month.