American-born Meram could play for Iraq at Olympics

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Justin Meram - Iraq

national team could take to the 2016 Olympic Games as an overage player, according to the reports.

Olympic rules permit each team to nominate three players born before January 1, 1993, in their squad for the football tournament in Rio de Janeiro, which will take place in August this year.

That would mean American-born winger Meram, who currently plays for Columbus Crew in Major League Soccer (MLS), would be able to represent the Young Lions of Mesopotamia squad in Brazil.

“It’s not like I’m some 10-year vet, so it’s quite an honor for me,” the 27-year-old rold MLS official site.

“I could maybe miss a month with my club but it’s the Olympics, representing your country. It would be an absolute honor to go and do that.

“Hopefully, with my experience, I could be calming for the younger guys going into it,” he added.

Meram also revealed that ihe Iraqi football association (IFA) is looking toward younger senior-team players to fill the overage Olympic spots.

“I think they’re looking for guys who are still young and fit and able to play at a high level,” he said regarding the potential retirement of ’s most experienced players like Younis Mahmoud.

Iraq qualified for the Olympics for the first time since 2004, when they finished fourth in the Athens Games.