Carl Jenkinson’s international future lies with England, according to boss Roy Hodgson.
The youngster trained with the squad on Sunday as they prepared for their game against Poland at London Colney, and despite representing Finland at underage level, it seems Jenkinson has plumped for the country of his birth.
Via the BBC, Hodgson confirmed that the former Charlton man had chosen to play for England and that his call-up was not simply to rule him out of an international future elsewhere.
“He didn’t take a lot of convincing. We had a problem with Kyle Walker and wanted a full complement in our training session, so we called Carl up. He was in my thoughts anyway.
“I invited him to train with us knowing full well he couldn’t take part in this game, but it gave me the opportunity to sit down and ask him the question.
“I don’t want to trick him to play for England in a few minutes in a game to block him, but he had to make a decision because we’re very interested in him, even if the competition is tougher to get him into the England team rather than the Finland team. He made it very clear he wanted to play for England.”
Because of his Finnish connection the FA must wait for international clearance and with England’s next game not until 2013 it could be some time before he makes his debut.
However, all going well he could be part of a generation of English Arsenal players who could be in the team for years. He’d join Gunners Kieran Gibbs, Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and even Theo Walcott (should his contract wrangles be sorted) in the national side, and given their age they could play together for club and country for years to come.