Marseille midfielder Maxime Lopez has kept the door open to play for the Algerian national team, following his side’s recent 3-1 win in the Europa League against Athletic Bilbao.
Lopez, who has an Algerian mother and a Spanish father, has so far represented France at Under-21 level as this was the country of his birth. He was born in Marseille, and came through the club’s academy system.
He told Bein Sports reporters after the game: “My mother is from Bejaia. I respect the Algerian national team, it’s a very nice selection, but we’ll see.”
The 20-year-old is a central midfield player with an excellent range of passing, and has five assists this season for Marseille. His older brother Julien Lopez, who plays in Ligue 2 for Paris FC, opted for the Algerian national team.
The Algerian midfield is in desperate need of a high quality central midfielder, to replace the ageing likes of Hassan Yebda, Mehdi Lacen and Adlene Guedioura.
Ismael Bennacer opted to pick Algeria, thanks to the guidance of Mohamed Raouraoua, the former President of the Algerian Football Association.
Kheireddine Zetchi will not want to let Lopez, as well as Houssem Aouar of Lyon, slip through his fingers as Algeria look to build a team ahead of the 2019 African Cup of Nations.