By 90Min
February 09, 2018

German-born Rani Khedira has turned down the chance to represent Tunisia at the World Cup, claiming that it would be wrong to take the place of someone devoted to the country. 

The 24-year-old was born in Stuttgart and has represented Germany at youth level, but has never received a call-up for the senior side from national team manager Joachim Löw.

Like his brother Sami - now at Juventus - Khedira was approached by the Tunisian Football Federation, due to his father being from the north African country, but declined the offer.

Maja Hitij/GettyImages

Speaking to the official FC Augsburg website, Khedira explained his choice to stick with the nation he has grown up in.

"I'm proud Tunisia considered me, but I was born in Germany and only speak in German. That was the deciding factor.  It was a long process. My dad is a proud Tunisian. I carry both countries in my heart and wish them both well. It's the correct decision, though."


Khedira believes players fully committed to Tunisia deserve to take precedence in the journey to Russia.

"I do not think it is fair I take the place of players who have worked their socks off for the last two years to reach the World Cup, either."

Simon Hofmann/GettyImages

Khedira's older brother, Sami, may travel to the World Cup, however, having won the competition in 2014.

After being confined to a substitute's role at RB Leipzig, the Swabian joined FC Augsburg for more first-team opportunities.

And Khedira has been a fundamental reason to die Fuggerstädter's great campaign so far, featuring in seventeen Bundesliga games, as his side seventh and three points off a Champions League spot.

Fittingly, Augsburg's next two matches are against RB Leipzig and VfB Stuttgart, with Khedira poised to play against both his former sides - the latter his hometown club.

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