Bayern Munich starlet Jamal Musiala has confirmed he will snub England to represent Germany at international level.
The former Chelsea youngster was born in Fulda, near Stuttgart, but moved to England at the age of seven.
He attended schools in south-west London and featured in Chelsea’s academy until he was 16, when he moved back to Germany with Bayern.
Since then he has forced his way into the Bayern first team, becoming their youngest-ever goalscorer in the process.
Throughout his youth career he featured for both England and Germany, but the soon-to-be 18-year-old is now ready to commit to his birth country.
He told The Athletic: “What is best for my future? Where do I have more chances to play?
“In the end, I just listened to the feeling that over a long period of time kept telling me that it was the right decision to play for Germany, the land I was born in. Still, it wasn’t an easy decision for me.
“I have a heart for Germany and a heart for England. Both hearts will keep on beating.
“It is difficult to find words for what England means for me because I have so many memories connected to very positive emotions.”
It has been a hectic season so far – so make sure you don’t miss a single thing by signing up for the brilliant new Mirror Football newsletter!
All the latest transfer news and big stories will land straight into your inbox. You won’t miss out.
To sign up, put your email at the top of this article or follow the instructions on this link.
Musiala’s mother is German, which may have played some part in the decision, while his father is British-Nigerian.
His rise to prominence at Bayern has raised questions of why Chelsea did not make a bigger effort to keep hold of him, particularly with his latest crowning moment.
The attacking midfielder started the first leg of Bayern’s Champions League last-16 tie against Lazio on Tuesday, and scored, setting a new record in the process.
Watching the match from the BT Sport studio – prior to Musiala’s decision – ex-Bayern Munich and England midfielder Owen Hargreaves said: “I would love to see him in an England shirt but it shows what level he is at if countries like England and Germany are competing for him at 17 years old.”
Peter Crouch added: “I believe Gareth should pick him. We don’t want him going to play for Germany. You don’t know his mindset, he will have Germany people in his ears, but why don’t you cap him?”
Sadly for England, that ship has now sailed.