After Nigeria Snub, Abraham Demoted To England U-21s; Lookman, Solanke, Ejaria Invited
The striker who turned down Nigeria’s advances for a chance with England seniors, Tammy Abraham, has been sent back to the England Under-21s.
Abraham, born to Nigerian parents, opted for England last year after Nigeria Football Federation President Amaju Pinnick met with the Swansea striker and offered him a spot in the World Cup-bound Super Eagles.
But Abraham, then in good form, chose England and had the backing of then Swansea manager Paul Clement, who has since been fired.
Abraham, who has previously played for age-grade England teams, got a senior call-up for friendly games against Germany and Brazil last November and played in both games.
He was on from the start against Germany on 10 November and played for 59 minutes in the 0-0 draw, but was a 75th minute substitute against Brazil four days later in another 0-0 draw.
His form has since plummeted though and there is no place for him in Gareth Southgate’s squad for friendly matches against Italy and the Netherlands later in March.
Abraham has scored seven goals in 31 matches in all competitions this season, four goals in 24 Premier League games.
Since his senior England games, Abraham has scored only three goals in all competitions. He has not scored in 13 games in the Premier League since November and his three goals were all against lower league sides, two in the FA Cup against Notts County and one against MK Dons in the Carabao Cup.
Now the 20-year-old striker, on loan at Swansea from Chelsea, has been demoted to England Under-21s who play the Cyrille Regis International with Romania and a Euro U-21s qualifier against Ukraine in March.
Abraham is one of 26 players head coach Aidy Boothroyd has called up for the games
There are several other Nigerian-born players in the squad, including Ademola Lookman, who is on loan at RB Leipzig from Everton, and Liverpool youngster Ovie Ejaria, who is on loan at Championship strugglers Sunderland.
Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke and Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Josh Onomah, who is on loan at Aston Villa in the Championship, are the other players with Nigerian heritage in the Young Lions squad.
They will face Romania at Wolves’ Molineux on Saturday 24 March, in the Cyrille Regis International.
That match will lead into the Euro qualifier with Ukraine at Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane on Tuesday, 27 March, when Boothroyd’s team will be looking to complete a double over their visitors following November’s 2-0 win in Kiev.
Angus Gunn – Norwich City (loan from Manchester City)
Dean Henderson – Shrewsbury Town (loan from Manchester United)
Freddie Woodman – Aberdeen (loan from Newcastle United)
Trent Alexander-Arnold – Liverpool
Ben Chilwell – Leicester City
Jake Clarke-Salter – Sunderland (loan from Chelsea)
Dael Fry – Middlesbrough
Mason Holgate – Everton
Jonjoe Kenny – Everton
Ryan Sessegnon – Fulham
Fikayo Tomori – Hull City (loan from Chelsea)
Kyle Walker-Peters – Tottenham Hotspur
Joe Worrall – Nottingham Forest
Tom Davies – Everton
Kieran Dowell – Nottingham Forest (loan from Everton)
Ovie Ejaria – Sunderland (loan from Liverpool)
Ainsley Maitland-Niles – Arsenal
Josh Onomah – Aston Villa (loan from Tottenham Hotspur)
Harry Winks – Tottenham Hotspur
Tammy Abraham – Swansea City (loan from Chelsea)
Dominic Calvert-Lewin – Everton
Demarai Gray – Leicester City
Jack Harrison – Middlesbrough (loan from Manchester City)
Ademola Lookman – RB Leipzig (loan from Everton)
James Maddison – Norwich City
Dominic Solanke – Liverpool