MELBOURNE Victory left-back Adama Traore will be ineligible for national selection even if he gains Australian citizenship, the FFA confirmed today.
Under FIFA regulations, a player cannot change their allegiance after representing their country of origin at national youth levels, unless they held dual nationality at the time of their original call-up.
Traore, 23, has represented the country of his birth, the Ivory Coast, at under-17, under-19 and under-21 levels.
"Under current FIFA regulations, Adama Traore will not be eligible for the Socceroos upon becoming an Australian citizen due to his participation in official matches for the Ivory Coast youth national teams at a time when he did not have an Australian citizenship," a FFA spokesperson told the Herald Sun.
Traore had been touted as an answer to the left-back conundrum for the national side, a position which has changed between five players since the retirement of Socceroos stalwart Scott Chipperfield.
FFA technical director Han Berger said he had discussed the possibility of a call-up for Traore with national coach Holger Osieck.
"We were hoping that he could play for Australia and that's right (there were discussions). I don't think it's a secret that left-back position is a difficult one as it is for many teams and countries," Berger told the Herald Sun.
"We were interested in to see how he would develop when he was fit again and if he could get an Australian citizenship and passport. He would have been an interesting option for that difficult position."
However Traore will no longer be considered an overseas player under A-League rules when he gains his citizenship, freeing up a space for a new foreign recruit at Melbourne Victory.