Neven Subotic has chosen to play for his father's homeland of Serbia, and informed the U.S. Soccer federation of his decision.
Borussia Dortmund defender Neven Subotic has chosen to play soccer for Serbia instead of the United States.
Subotic was born in Bosnia, but his father is Serbian. His family moved to Germany for work when Subotic was just two. When war broke out in the family's homeland, they remained in Germany, but moved to the United States when a work permit expired.
The Subotics settled in Florida, and Neven eventually gained American citizenship and an American passport. During that process, he was spotted by national team scouts and placed in the exclusive training program at Bradenton. Subotic played for the U.S. under-17 team in the 2005 FIFA World Cup. He also later played for the under-20 teams.
Subotic now plays for
Borussia Dortmund in the German league. However, though Germany was interested in adding him to the squad, he was still not yet a citizen. Since he also wasn't a citizen when he played for the U.S. in 2005, FIFA regulations prevented him from ever playing for Germany.
The statute specifies that a player who is eligible for more than one country can switch country representations once before turning 21, but only if a citizen of the other country at the time of that first FIFA youth competition.
That rule eliminated Germany as an option, leaving the U.S., Bosnia, and Serbia.
Subotic wrote to U.S. soccer officials, informing them of his decision to play for Serbia.
"We wish Neven all the best and continued success in the future," U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati reportedly said Thursday.--Goal.com