Alex Iwobi, Ola Aina key to Arsenal Prodigy, Joseph Olowu’s Nigerian Aspirations


Arsenal U23 star, Joseph Olowu has revealed that the pace set by his compatriots and buddies, Alex Iwobi and Ola Aina and others who chose the Super Eagles instead of England was among the reasons he decided to switch his allegiance to Nigeria.

Olowu admitted that it was a tough decision for him to pick Nigeria over England because of what he has gained from the latter but that he doesn’t foresee any problem with that.

He stressed that he has started trying to update his knowledge of Nigeria and that he is also quite open to learning a few new things about the country and its vast cultures.

“Considering that I have lived in the UK all my life and I’ve grown up here since I was young it did come as a tough decision because this country has given me so much,” Olowu told SportingLife in a chat.

“If I am being honest my experiences in the UK have shaped me into the person I am today and for that all I will always be grateful. I know quite a lot about Nigeria already like I listen to a lot of Nigerian artists and I really enjoy the food a lot. I do look forward to learning a lot more about the country and its cultures.” 

The 2017-18 Premier League 2 Division One winner with Arsenal opined that positive information he has received from both Nigerian internationals has strengthened his conviction that he made the right decision to offer his services to Nigeria.

The youngster added that he grew to become motivated by the heroics of the Kanu Nwankwo led Dream Team I that won the gold medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta Georgia, USA and that the contributions of Nigerian players within and beyond the United Kingdom become additional inspiration for him to be identified with the West African nation.

“There are many players that have inspired me to play for the Super Eagles from the 1996 Dream Team to the current squad,” Olowu continued.

“But I think the players that have motivated me the most are Alex Iwobi and Ola Aina because they both came through in England but still chose to represent their motherland.

He (Alex Iwobi) inspired me because he was once in the Arsenal academy I am in now. He broke through into the first team and that showed the young players they would be given the opportunity if they worked hard and earned it.”

The 19-year-old defender has begun the season impressively with Arsenal U-23 who are currently joint top along with Chelsea on seven points from three matches in the Premier League 2 Division One table.

He has helped them to two victories over Blackburn Rovers (away) and Brighton (home) and a home draw against Everton in the three matches played thus far.

Olowu affirmed that he will continue to offer his best to the Arsenal junior teams with the hindsight that he could be called up to train with the senior team before the end of the season.


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