Ashleigh Plumptre: Nigeria's latest star
Ashleigh Plumptre playing for Leicester City Women in the FA Women's Championship 2020 (Picture credit - Getty Images)

Despite being capped 30 times at youth levels for England the Leicester City defender has opted to represent the Super Falcons as Nigeria prepare for a friendly 6-nation tournament.

Ashleigh Plumptre was instrumental in guiding the Midland's team to the FA Women's Championship title last season, only missing one league game as Jonathan Morgan's team gained promotion to the Women's Super League.

Plumptre is from Leicester so being able to represent your hometown club and national side is some feat for the defender.

The defender has recently penned a new two-year deal with the Foxes as they embark on their first season in the WSL.

  • Is she eligible?

Back in June 2021, Plumptre went on record in an interview with BBC Africa to state "The idea of me being able to play for Nigeria, with that being an option, I would happily grab that with both hands".

The versatile defender went on to clarify that she qualified for contention via her Nigerian Grandfather.

Those words lay the foundations for her senior call-up. Swedish born siblings, Josephine and Evelyn Ijeh of BK Hacken have also found themselves with a surprise first senior call-up.

Ashleigh could find herself making her international debut against any of the tournaments opponents which include the likes of, Cameroon, Ghana and South Africa.

  • The squad

The squad in full as the team arrived in Austria for a short training camp before the friendly tournament commences is as follows;

Goalkeepers: Tochukwu Oluehi (CD Pozoalbense, Spain); Chiamaka Nnadozie (Paris FC, France); Patience Okeke (Bayelsa Queens); Yewande Balogun (California Storm, USA)

Defenders: Glory Ogbonna (Edo Queens); Osinachi Ohale and Chidinma Okeke (Madrid CFF, Spain); Esther Ogbonna (Edo Queens); Onyinyechi Zogg (FC Zurich, Switzerland); Nicole Payne (West Virginia University, USA); Michelle Alozie (Houston Dash Reserves, USA); Ashleigh Plumptre (Leicester City, England); Josephine Ijeh (BK Hacken, Sweden)

Midfielders: Rita Chikwelu (Madrid CFF, Spain); Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene (Eskilstuna United, Sweden); Toni Payne (Sevilla FC, Spain); Mowaninuola Dada (Watford FC, England)

Forwards: Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid, Spain); Francisca Ordega (Levante UD, Spain); Gift Monday (FC Robo Queens); Joy Bokiri (Bayelsa Queens); Uchenna Kanu (Linkopings FC, Sweden); Ebere Orji (Sundsvall DFF, Sweden); Ini-Abasi Umotong (Lewes FC, England); Evelyn Ijeh (BK Hacken, Sweden); Desire Oparanozie (FC Dijon, France)

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