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My uncle's a Prem icon, I followed in his footsteps after snubbing England

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FULHAM star Alex Iwobi has revealed he opted to play for Nigeria because of his uncle Jay-Jay Okocha.

Iwobi was born in Lagos, Nigeria but moved to England aged four and represented the Three Lions at U16, U17 and U18 levels while at the Arsenal academy.

Alex Iwobi chose to play for Nigeria because of his uncle Jay-Jay Okocha

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Alex Iwobi chose to play for Nigeria because of his uncle Jay-Jay OkochaCredit: Getty
Okocha is a Nigeria legend after winning two tournaments with the Super Eagles

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Okocha is a Nigeria legend after winning two tournaments with the Super EaglesCredit: Getty

He eventually broke into the first-team at The Emirates before a change of heart saw him pick Nigeria over England.

The midfielder revealed he was inspired to play for the Super Eagles by his uncle Okocha, who is a Nigeria legend.

Iwobi said to Arsenal TV in 2018: “I went over there to see what it’s like and the way they described my uncle. Wow, he’s a legend.

“Even when we were just walking around with him and in the car, the acknowledgement he gets from everyone… I thought, ‘Wow, maybe one day I would like to feel like that as well’.

“He influenced me without even talking to me about it.”

Iwobi, 28, has gone on to win 78 caps for Nigeria and has represented his country at the 2018 World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations in 2019, 2022 and 2023.

However he is still yet to hit the heights of his iconic relative Okocha, who remains a fan favourite for Nigerians.

The former Paris Saint-Germain and Bolton star played for his country 73 times, scoring 14 goals.

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He helped Nigeria win the Africa Cup of Nations in 1994 and the Olympic Games two years later.

Okocha also played in nine World Cup games for his country across three tournaments from 1994 to 2002.

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