• NT: Morocco want Brahim Diaz

    Morocco coach Herve Renard is hoping to persuade Manchester City striker Brahim Diaz to play for the Atlas Lions for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

    The Malaga-born player has already featured for the Spain’s under-21 side but could switch allegiance under Fifa rules because he has not played for the senior side yet.

    “We know Diaz has played for the Spain youth side but we are hoping that we can make him change his mind,” a source close to the coach told soka25east.

    Fifa rules state that a footballer capped at junior level can represent another country at senior level as long as he possesses dual nationality.

    “Maybe he took that decision (to play for Spain) at a very tough moment and at a young age,” the source at Moroccan Federation added.

    “He’s a great midfielder who has proved that he can score goals.”

    Born in Spain to a Moroccan father and a Spanish mother, Diaz, 18, started his football career with Malaga CF from 2010 to 2014 before he moved to Manchester City for an initial GBP 200,000 deal. He then made his first debut for the city in September 2016 as a substitute against Swansea City.

    Diaz made his Champions League debut for Manchester City against Feyenoord last month, playing 28 minutes.

    Moroccan officials have paid several visits to the player’s family, following an intensive naturalization process that began in 2014 and meant to ‘bring back talents belonging to the soil’ to help rebuild the national team.


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