Brahim Díaz chooses Morocco | Soccer | Sports


Brahim Díaz will play with Morocco. One week before the next national team break, the decision had to be imminent and the player born in Malaga but with Moroccan paternal origins has opted for the African team, fourth placed in the last World Cup, which had included him in the pre-list for the next commitments, against Angola and Mauritania.

The choice represents a change with respect to the preferences that the footballer had expressed. His priority was always waiting for the call from Spain. However, the delay in the call with La Roja and Morocco’s insistence on his services ended up tipping the balance. One of the unknowns that existed for Luis de la Fuente’s list for the matches against Colombia (Saturday the 23rd) and Brazil (Tuesday the 26th), which will be made public next Friday, was finally resolved. Brahim will not be in it.

The decision comes after Brahim, in his early days, had played several matches with the Spanish youth teams (under-17, under-19 and under-21) and even one with the senior team, against Lithuania in Leganés. This meeting, held in June 2021, took place under the special circumstances of the pandemic. During the preparation for the Euro Cup that was going to be played that summer, the team that Luis Enrique then led had to be completely confined due to a positive test from Sergio Busquets, and the solution was that those called up with the U-21, with Luis de la Fuente at the head, attended that friendly meeting in Butarque. Despite the composition of that team, the records showed that that duel was played by the senior team. In the eleven was Brahim, who scored the second goal of the 4-0 win.

The recruitment of Brahim by Morocco responds to its strategy to attract players born or raised in European countries, but who do not find a fit in those teams. The federation has years ago created a wide network of scouts on the old continent that searches for and tracks young players with Moroccan origins. This is how, little by little, it has seduced many of the players who reached fourth place in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, the best result of an African and Arab team in the big event. Up to 14 of those summoned for the great Doha event were born outside Morocco. Ziyech or Amrabat, among others.

In this context, the signing by Brahim. The interest in him comes from afar, since before the 2018 World Cup, when the footballer was at Manchester City (he was bought for 350,000 euros in 2014 from the Málaga youth academy). In recent times, the seduction maneuvers had been intensifying. It was public that the coach, Walid Regragui, traveled a year ago, after the World Cup success, to Milan, where the player was still, to visit him and try to convince him.

The position that emerged from the player is that his preference was to wait for the call from Spain, for which he had been waiting for years. He had hoped to make the list for the 2021 Games, in the team led by Luis de la Fuente, but he was left out. And in recent months, with the prominence that Brahim has acquired at Real Madrid, he also waited for a call of interest from the coach, which did not occur either.

The situation had reached a point of no return, in which the player had to opt for Spain or Morocco. And the finger pointed at the African team. In recent months, Brahim had made the necessary administrative consultations to check whether, in the case of choosing Morocco, he had all the necessary papers to join Regragui’s group. With everything tied up, the Madrid attacker will join the African team in the next few hours.

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