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Munir El-Haddadi’s case eases pressure on Yamine Lamal’s choice of national team

Rules relating to international players have changed

Valencia CF v UD Las Palmas - LaLiga EA Sports Photo by Aitor Alcalde Colomer/Getty Images

Yamine Lamal is the newest sensation out of FC Barcelona, and the two national teams he could play for have taken notice. Both Spain and Morocco are keen on the youngster, who has bags of potential.

One thing that will help him in this scenario is the case of Munir El Hadaddi, who went through something similar. He broke into the Barcelona first team and had both countries calling for him.

He accepted Spain’s call-up, played 13 minutes and... that was it. He was never called by the Spanish again. In that time, he was not allowed to switch allegiances. He ultimately took his case to the Court of Arbitration in Sport, where he was finally granted the ability to switch. He has since played 11 games for Morocco.

Spain national team coach Vicente del Bosque has since expressed regret for what happened, saying it was not his intention to tie him permanently to a country that would not give him callups.

Since 2020, players are allowed the ability to switch national teams if they played no more than three matches with their previous national team, so long as none were in the FIFA World Cup. Then, after at least three years without callups, they are permitted to play for another national team.

That means Yamal can calmly choose either Spain or Morocco, and if it ever happens that he permanently falls out of favor with either team, he can go to the other.

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