5 current superstars who could have played for France
France’s 2018 FIFA World Cup winning squad had several players of African origin including two players who were born in Africa namely - Samuel Umtiti (Cameroon) and Steve Mandanda (Zaire).
Even members of the France team that won the World Cup in 1998 had players who were born in Africa. Patrick Vieira was born in Senegal and Marcel Desailly was born in Ghana.
It is not just players of African origin, there are many players with a non-French origin eligible to play for France and it is understandable why they would want to play for the newly crowned World Champions as their chances of winning an international trophy is enhanced.
However, there are also players who choose to represent another country despite being eligible to play for France. So, we picked out the five biggest superstars from the current crop of footballers who were eligible to play for France but chose not to.
Honourable mentions - Mehdi Benatia (Morocco), Anthony Lopes (Portugal) and Raphaël Guerreiro (Portugal)
#5 Leroy Sane (Germany)
Leroy Sane was eligible to represent Germany, France and Senegal at the international level. The German-born forward’s mother, Regina Weber, is a bronze medalist at the 1984 Olympics for Germany in rhythmic gymnastics and his father is a former Senegalese international born in Senegal and raised in France.
The Manchester City forward was eligible to represent Germany through his birth and his mother, while he was eligible to represent Senegal through his father. He also holds a French citizenship which makes him eligible to play for the two-time World Champions.
Speaking of representing France, Sane made the following comments:
"I was born and raised in Germany. I still have family in France, but I feel German. That's why I decided to wear the shirt of the Nationalmannschaft.
"There was never any question of wearing that of France or Senegal. My country is Germany. I got a tattoo of the map of Senegal, it's true, as well as Germany's. Not that of France, sorry."
Sane was left out of Germany’s squad for the World Cup despite being named the PFA Young Player of the Year in 2017/18 for helping Man City win the league title. If he had picked France, then he would have surely been in the squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.