Super Eagles forward, Anthony Nwakaeme, claims he rejected a big-money move to China in order to stay in contention to play for Nigeria.
Nwakaeme, 29, was snubbed by Gernot Rohr for the FIFA World Cup in Russia.
The once-capped Eagles believe a move to Asia would kill his chances and instead opted to join Trabzonspor on a three-year deal from Israeli champions Hapoel Be’er Sheva.
“Everything is not about money, there is also the possibility of staying in contention for a place with Nigeria,” the 29-year-old he told BBC Sport.
“I am a very competitive person and I love to challenge myself.”
He joins compatriot Ogenyi Onazi at the seven-time Turkish champions.
“Trabzonspor has big ambitions and as a professional footballer this is what I need,” he added.
“I saw the opening game of the season, I love the amazing atmosphere, fans and stadium here.”
Nwakaeme, who began his European career in Romania, had a successful three-year spell at Hapoel Be’er Sheva winning three successive league titles as well as lifting the Israeli Cup twice.
He scored 43 goals and created 24 assists in 120 appearances for the club after joining from rivals Hapoel Raanana in June 2015.
His form in Israel caught the attention of Gernot Rohr and earned a call-up to the Super Eagles squad for their 2018 World Cup qualifiers in August 2017.
Nwakaeme was an unused substitute in three games before making his debut against Algeria in November