Reuters Soccer Blog
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A new phenomenon of ‘dipping a toe’ into the waters of international football is beginning to emerge, further devaluing the ultimate individual achievement in the game.
Rules on international eligibility have been watered down over the years but the changes could not have foreseen the growing global village, immigration and movement of people that is providing the game with a much more multi-cultured generation.
As a result we now have players who are able to ‘test drive’ the countries they are eligible to play for, before settling on a final choice.
It has all come about since the relaxing of the strict rules on international football in late 2003, when FIFA’s statutes changed to allow a player who had represented one country at junior level to choose to play for another country, as long as he was eligible for dual nationality, was under the age of 21 and had not played at full A international level.