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Turkey comes calling for Adnan Januzaj

Mar 27, 2014, 1:25 PM EDT

Britain Soccer Premier League AP

Turkey is throwing its hat in the Adnan Januzaj ring to encourage the youngster to chose The Crescent-Stars as his team for international soccer.

Januzaj is currently available to play for five different national teams: Turkey, Albania, Belgium, Kosovo and Serbia. Soon a sixth nation, England, could be added to that list through his residency situation at Manchester United.

But credit to Turkey manager Fatih Terim, he won’t go down without a fight.

“If we don’t offer Januzaj the chance, we will be criticised for missing out,” Terim told NTV Spor.

“The Turkish Football Federation president, staff and myself have asked him to play for Turkey.

“His father is Turkish, his mother is Kosovan and Albania, England, Kosovo and Belgium all want him to represent their country.”

The Belgian-born winger burst onto the scene this season as a member of United. With a dizzying array of skills, quickness, awareness, agility and balance, the 19-year-old has recorded three goals and two assists in 22 Premier League appearances.

Januzaj and his Manchester United teammates take on Aston Villa Saturday at 8:00am ET on NBCSN.

  1. mikeevergreen - Mar 27, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    So, Turkey wants to make chicken out of everybody else. Have at it!

  2. talgrath - Mar 27, 2014 at 5:18 PM

    Januzaj is just a great example of how screwed up FIFA’s rules are for eligibility. Technically if I was a soccer player I could play for three countries, America, Denmark or Germany, all because one of my grandparents were born in Denmark and the another was born in Germany. Never mind that my actual physical connections to Germany and Denmark are three days in Germany as part of a European tour and the fact that I like to eat Danishes.

    • jkbadger10 - Mar 28, 2014 at 9:10 AM

      This is going to be strange to say, but FIFA actually isn’t to blame in this situation or your own hypothetical. Instead, FIFA just requires a player to have citizenship of the country he or she represents. However, FIFA does not tell countries how to determine citizenship. Instead, it is up to the country to make this determination. In your own hypothetical situation, you being eligible for Denmark and Germany is because of their own immigration and citizenship laws. It has nothing to do with FIFA.

      I never thought I would write a paragraph saying that FIFA is innocent.

      • talgrath - Mar 28, 2014 at 5:22 PM

        Sorry, but you’re wrong. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FIFA_eligibility_rules#Modern_changes Article 17 of FIFA’s charter says that players can play for a country under if your parents or grandparents were born in the country, you were born there, or if you were a resident of the nation for five years; citizenship literally doesn’t matter. Januzaj was born in Belgium, but his parents/grandparents were born in Turkey, Albania, Kosovo and Serbia, he is currently a resident in England and if he lives there until he is 23 he would be eligible to play for them. By FIFA’s rules, I am therefore eligible to play (if anyone wanted me to play for them) for three countries, despite being a US citizen and resident through and through; I could play for Denmark or Germany since I have grandparents that were born there.

  3. lugina95 - Mar 29, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    His father is Turkish? These reporters are idiots both his parents are from Kosovo and he was born in Belgium so it should be between those two countries only including Albanian but he rejected them

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