11 European stars born in Africa


With FC Barcelona's Ilaix Moriba reportedly choosing to represent Guinea over Spain, we take a look at 11 African-born stars who chose to play for European countries instead. 

While some European-born players, such as Hakim Ziyech and Achraf Hakimi, have chosen to represent African nations, others have done the opposite, including the likes of Samuel Umtiti and former Manchester United star Nani, who represent France and Portugal, respectively. 

Scroll through the gallery above to see 11 European stars who were born in Africa 

Umititi was born in the Cameroon capital of Yaounde, and is understood to have moved to France with his parents when he was just two years old.

Having been developed in Olympique Lyon's academy system, the Barca defender has represented France from U17 level up to the senior national team, for whom he has earned 31 caps and with whom he won the 2018 FIFA World Cup. 

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Portugal star Nani, meanwhile, was born in Praia, Cape Verde. The Orlando City attacker spent his junior years in Portugal, where he represented Sporting Lisbon before signing for the Red Devils in the 2007/08 season. 

Nani is not the only former United star to feature in our gallery, though, with his ex-teammate Patrice Evra being another African-born player who represented a European nation.

Evra began life in Dakar, Senegal, before moving to France at the age of one with his father, who is understood to have been a diplomat. 

Another notable name who was born in Africa but represented a European nation is Borussia Monchengladbach star Breel Embolo, who, despite being born in Cameroon, has now made 48 appearances for the Switzerland national team – you can find more African-born players who are playing for Europe in the gallery above!

Here are 12 players who snubbed Europe for Africa