Written in black on white in the Official Gazette: Since July 5, 2022, Joel Embiid He was naturalized in French! Dodging the question when questioned, the Sixers hub went to the end of the process, and so can now claim a pick in the French team.
As for Lorenzo Brown, a naturalized Spaniard, the premise of Embiid being in the blues shirt for the 2023 World Cup and/or the 2024 Olympics should cause a lot of ink to flow.
Four years have passed since a rumor spread about the arrival of the Cameroonian pivotal player to the French national team, and the reactions were not absent. Starting with the player himself. It was last May.
“I never said I would play for France, it was only a possibility. We never know. I never thought about playing at international level until then because I had to be healthy first. I have to play a few years (without injuries) before thinking about a national team. National “. “After that, it is complicated. I come from Cameroon but there are many problems. They have to sort all this out. I love my country, I am my patriot. I want to play for my country. If I had a choice to make, it would be Cameroon first, if there was a framework Good, because that’s where I come from. But at some point, it won’t be my decision alone. And there’s also a team (Philadelphia) who invested me $150 million. It’s a lot of money to let the players go to a place where there is no good medical environment. So, There’s my country, there’s France, and there’s the US too. I just want to be in a good frame.”
“We will have to get a FIBA agreement, which tends to favor players who will strengthen African countries”
On the side of the union, it was recognized that contacts were made.
“We called him, Patrick Beasley (blues manager) saw him in the US but we didn’t open any files. He loves France and has a family here. So explained Jean-Pierre Ciotat, president of the FFBB, at the time. “We can imagine that for someone who was trained in France, has the culture, but to get a guy like him he is definitely exceptional, and his naturalization to strengthen the team, I don’t believe in that. He doesn’t have French citizenship. You don’t naturalize people so easily. And it will take time. After That, we’ll have to get a FIBA agreement, which tends to favor players who will strengthen African nations. I also imagine the protest it might cause in other countries. We’ll see but I don’t believe it.”
As for Boris Diao, the French team manager, he was simply waiting for everything to become official moving forward.
“I know that he personally started the naturalization process and that after that he would like to play for France. However, we do not put the cart before the horse and wait for these steps to succeed. »
As they succeeded, there were no longer any obstacles to France’s arrival with a pair of Gobert-Embiid at the World Cup, if France qualified, or especially at the 2024 Olympics.