Torino defender Ola Aina has disclosed that things slowed down for him at the club level after he represented Nigeria at the 2021 African Cup of Nations, but he has no regrets.
In the first part of the 2021/22 season, Aina made 16 league appearances of which 13 were from the start before he was called up to the Nigeria squad for the delayed 2021 Nations Cup that took place in Cameroon from 9 January to 6 February 2022. He made three appearances as the Super Eagles were eliminated from the tournament at the R16 by Tunisia.
Following his return from international duty, the 25-year-old was confined to the bench. He made five appearances out of a possible 16 towards the end of last season. Ain has stated that he has no regrets, even though representing his nation might have cost him his spot at club level.
“My season was up and down. The first half from August before I left for the Afcon was okay, a few good performances and some things in those games I think were quite nice as well,” Aina told BBC Sport Africa.
“And then after the Afcon things really slowed up for me. I wasn’t being selected in the starting XI and .ing games wasn’t as free flowing as prior, but I have no regrets whatsoever.”
Aina has one year left on his Torino contract. When asked about his future, the Chelsea youth product said: “Nothing is really clearer, but hopefully in a few weeks I’ll know exactly what I am working towards.
“We’ll see what the future holds, and hopefully whatever team it is or whether I stay at Torino, they will understand that the African Cup of Nations and .ing for my country is a big part of my career and life, so I will be hoping to continue to . for Nigeria without any problems.”
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