The federation held talks with the three booters -- Ghana's Samad Yussif, Guina's Ismael Bangoura and Nigeria's Kingsley Chigozie – heard their demands and acquired their signatures on the provided forms, which will be forwarded to the home ministry within a couple of days to expedite the process.
The three booters in question are already eligible to apply for Bangladeshi citizenship since each of them has already spent more than four years continuously in this country. If the home ministry is convinced, the procedure of naturalisation may take one month in the least and six months at most. If citizenship is awarded, the federation will then apply to the FIFA Status Committee to make them eligible to represent Bangladesh national team.
BFF general secretary Abu Nayeem Shohag, who was present in the meeting, reiterated that acquiring citizenship will not necessarily mean these three players will walk into the national team.
“As per earlier talks between head coach Lodewijk de Kruif and the three players, we sat today and took their consent. However, awarding nationality doesn't mean they will get chance to play directly in the national team. They will be included in preliminary squad and then they will have to prove themselves to be included in the final squad,” Shohag said.
The players themselves were very positive about the prospect of getting Bangladeshi citizenship and representing this country at the international stage.
“We have seen something positive in the meeting and requested them (BFF) to start the process of the naturalisation,” said Chigozie, who currently plays for Sheikh Russel KC.
“Bangladesh is like my second home. I stay here seven to eight months while spending rest of the time in Spain. As a professional player, I give full effort on the pitch for my club and there will be no shortage of effort when I play for the national team,” said the centre-back, who is the oldest of the three at 31 years of age.
Bangoura, who is currently playing for Mohammedan and has already scored nine goals in the ongoing premier league, said he is eager to play for Bangladesh.
“We have had a good interaction with the BFF officials about the nationality. I have agreed because I want to play for Bangladesh national team and want to stay with Bangladesh football,” said the Guinean.
However, the booters stated their queries regarding the nature of nationality, the incentives that they might receive from BFF, their status in the next domestic league and whether they will be provided with air tickets to travel to their native countries.
The BFF officials promised to provide them the same facilities that the local players of the national team receive when they are with the national team while promising that they might get extra benefits provided that they produce some good performances for the team.