The multinational stars England may lose: Six Liverpool trophies but no Curtis Jones call-up could force decision

Matt Stead
Manchester United midfielder and England youth international Kobbie Mainoo
England face a battle over Kobbie Mainoo

England have probably tied Cole Palmer down but Kobbie Mainoo has joined Anthony Gordon and Liverpool star Curtis Jones on the radar of other nations.

This is not an exhaustive list of every player who is eligible to represent England and at least one other country at international level. But it is a collection of the main ones and will be periodically updated as and when other relevant players become apparent. Suggestions for other inclusions are encouraged.

 

Max Aarons (Norwich)
Approaches from Jamaica have been rejected by Aarons, whose 34 England youth caps, U21 Euros winner’s medal, 84 Premier League appearances, previous interest from Bayern Munich and Barcelona and status as a right-back has yet to be converted into senior international honours under a right-back-obsessed manager.

 

Tosin Adarabioyo (Fulham)
“I believe I should be going to the next World Cup either with England or Nigeria, that’s my target,” said the Fulham centre-half in July 2020. That ship has sailed for a Manchester City academy graduate whose Three Lions pathway was clear right up until the seniors. Interest from Liverpool and Spurs is a fine consolation.

 

Chuba Akpom (Ajax)
A 28-year-old whose most recent of four career Premier League appearances came in February 2015, with one incredible Championship season to his name and Ajax’s bench currently giving him splinters, was pursued on deadline day by Nottingham Forest. England and Nigeria seem slightly less enamoured.

 

Elliot Anderson (Newcastle)
Southgate and England “like” the injured Newcastle midfielder, while Scotland manager Steve Clarke is keeping that particular door open for a player who needs “a little time and space to make that decision”.

 

Trevoh Chalobah (Chelsea)
It remains a vague curiosity that a centre-half with substantial Premier and Champions League experience at 24, who has captained England youth sides from the U16s through the U20s and also represented the U21s, has yet to seemingly even register on the radar of the seniors. Or indeed Mauricio Pochettino. Sierra Leone continue to quietly bide their time.

 

Carney Chukwuemeka (Chelsea)
Born in Austria to Nigerian parents, Chelsea midfielder Chukwuemeka has only donned England colours at youth level thus far. But the 20-year-old technically remains on the market.

 

Josh Dasilva (Brentford)
“I am Angolan, my parents are Angolan, they are proud of where they are from and I am proud to be Angolan. I haven’t really had any contact so I am not too sure what the situation is, but if a chance comes around we can see what happens.” Not even the experience of  winning the European U19 Championship with England in 2017 can tie Dasilva down.

 

Marcus Edwards (Sporting)
An extensive and stunning career rebuild since leaving Spurs
in 2019 has restored at least some of the relevance surrounding the question of Edwards’ eligibility. Cyprus is still an option for the 25-year-old but England would be foolish not to consider him.

 

Morgan Gibbs-White (Nottingham Forest)
One of many players Jamaica have recently hoped to tempt over, Gibbs-White has resisted such overtures and is, in the eyes of Southgate, “progressing well” with Nottingham Forest and as U21s captain.

 

Anthony Gordon (Newcastle)
With 34 England youth caps, including a Player of the Tournament-worthy stint at centre-forward during a 2023 U21 Euros triumph, Gordon’s senior pathway seems clear. But they risk losing the Republic of Ireland-eligible Newcastle forward to Scotland, who have taken notice of the £45m man’s continued snubs from Southgate.

 

Archie Gray (Leeds)
Liam Cooper has described himself as a “secret agent” hoping to tempt former Leeds teammate Gray over to Scotland. But “he’s flying at the minute with England as captain of the under-18s, which is a bit of a stinker for us”.

 

Rico Henry (Brentford)
It would be egregious to lose an excellent left-back to Jamaica, even with his season-ending knee injury.

 

Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa)
Until the November squads, Konsa was precisely the sort of player held up as proof that Southgate does not pick on form. And his call-up only came after a few others pulled out, with an international debut passing him by against Malta and North Macedonia. The Aston Villa centre-half has thrived under Unai Emery and that won’t have been missed by DR Congo, Angola or Portugal.

 

Curtis Jones (Liverpool)
There is not a great deal of official correspondence to be found as to whether Jones might explore his Nigerian roots more formally in a footballing sense. But it is really weird that he remains out of the England picture while being really quite excellent for Liverpool at such a young age.

 

Tino Livramento (Newcastle)
Injury had stunted the 21-year-old’s otherwise inexorable rise but he is one of few not occupying the Newcastle treatment room currently so should benefit from regular first-team opportunities. The defender’s Scottish mother and Portuguese father slightly muddy the otherwise clear waters of 34 England youth caps from the U15s up.

 

Noni Madueke (Chelsea)
By the end of his seven-and-a-half year Chelsea contract, the picture should become much clearer for Madueke in terms of whether England follow up on his youth caps or Nigeria swoop in.

 

Kobbie Mainoo (Manchester United)
The race is on between England and Ghana, with a member of their FA’s executive council declaring that the Black Stars “would love to work with” Manchester United’s newest hero.

 

Dwight McNeil (Everton)
“When I see some of the other young players who are getting called up and are in and around the squad then he can’t be far away in my opinion but I’m bound to say that, I see him every day,” said Burnley manager Sean Dyche of McNeil in December 2019. The pair have been reunited to more moderate success at Everton and Jamaica might spring into action soon.

 

Reiss Nelson (Arsenal)
While Nelson’s impact as an Arsenal super-sub has been substantial in relatively recent times, it will take more than 390 Premier League minutes since the 2020/21 season to coax England into a battle with Zimbabwe over the former Young Lion.

 

Michael Olise (Crystal Palace)
“Like a lot of players with dual nationality, it is their right. We can’t guarantee them anything. We let them know that we are interested and he has chosen other paths,” said rejected U21 boss Carsley, even if there is still a glimmer of hope for England, Algeria and Nigeria for as long as Olise remains untouched by the France senior side.

 

Ryan Sessegnon (Spurs)
The distant cousin of 84-cap Benin international Stephane is thought to be eligible to represent The Cheetahs but the perennially injured Sessegnon would hope to find enough consistency – or any minutes at all – with Spurs to follow up on an England youth career which saw him constantly picked above his age group.

 

Djed Spence (Genoa, on loan from Spurs)
“He’s like a Rolls-Royce,” Wes Morgan once said of the right-back. Perhaps Spence will be overlooked by England in the same way the Jamaica international centre-half was.

 

Aaron Wan-Bissaka (Manchester United)
No longer does Wan-Bissaka wait by the phone expectedly for the call from Southgate. He is firmly out of the frame when it comes to right-backs and an appointment with DR Congo remains a possibility.

 

Joe Willock (Newcastle)
England could do far worse than include Willock in a reimagining of their midfield as a reliable squad option. The 24-year-old has played a crucial role in Newcastle’s rise and Montserrat can only be held off for so long.

 

Capped players who meet the criteria to switch allegiance

Harvey Barnes (Newcastle)
A solitary England friendly cap in October 2020 will not keep Scotland from dangling a carrot which is no longer forthcoming for the injured Newcastle winger under Southgate. John Carver is the Tartan Army’s assistant manager, by the way, hence all the Newcastle.

 

Nathaniel Chalobah (West Brom)
A senior England career which officially spans zero minutes after his stoppage-time introduction to a 3-2 Nations League victory over Spain in October 2018 will not extend any further, so Sierra Leone might be checking the FIFA rulebook.

 

Callum Hudson-Odoi (Nottingham Forest)
“That decision hasn’t been made yet. I’m still thinking it over,” was the September claim from a player who still qualifies for an international switch despite his three England caps. “Ghana is a very good option but let’s wait and see. Hopefully once I start playing games here, maybe Gareth or Ghana will come.”

 

Mason Greenwood (Manchester United)
Southgate has spoken typically diplomatically on the “very complex case” but the suggestion is that Greenwood will not be picked by England for at least as long as he is manager – which should please Jude Bellingham. Jamaica have no such qualms over selecting the Manchester United forward, with manager Heimir Hallgrimsson offering to carry Greenwood’s “baggage” because “we would like to have the best talent in our teams”.

 

Cole Palmer (Chelsea)
Two England caps do not quite put Palmer out of the reach of Saint Kitts and Nevis, although it does seem unlikely he’ll ever represent the nation whose flag adorns his boots.

 

Dominic Solanke (Bournemouth)
That friendly cap as a substitute against Brazil in November 2017 has not even translated into another call-up for Solanke yet, with the striker in the form of his career and potentially considering his international options; Nigeria would welcome him.

READ MORESolanke snub or Palmer put-down would be among harshest England tournament squad omissions ever