Jack Wilshere clarifies comments about England selection relating to Adnan Januzaj
Jack Wilshere insists his comments about England selection were not referring to Manchester United's Adnan Januzaj.
Last Updated: 09/10/13 11:42pm
Januzaj could eventually be eligible for England through residency, but the Arsenal midfielder appeared to raise concerns about the 18-year-old being called into the squad in the future.
"The only people who should play for England are English people," he said at an England press conference on Tuesday ahead of their World Cup qualifiers against Montenegro and Poland.
"If you live in England for five years it doesn't make you English. If I went to Spain and lived there for five years I am not going to play for Spain."
Wilshere has since suggested that some of his comments were taken out of context.
He wrote on Twitter: "Just to clarify a few things....again!
"Seems to be a trend in this country, poor journalism in my eyes! I wasn't referring to Janujaz (sic)...
"The question was should foreign players be allowed to play for England, and in my opinion I don't think they should! He is a great player...
"I wish he was English! I'm sure most of you agree with me even if some journalist are trying to make me look bad....again!"
England's 1966 World Cup final hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst has insisted he would have no problem with Adnan Januzaj turning out for the national team.
When asked about a possible call-up, Hurst said: "Absolutely, the two goals he scored the other day, we want as many players playing (for England) like that, as we saw with the lad (Ravel) Morrison at West Ham who scored a fantastic goal recently.
"We're quite clearly not developing enough English-born, talented potential world-class players and that's got to change if we're going to be a force to be reckoned with."
Januzaj has never expressed a desire to represent England and is likely to opt for Belgium, the country of his birth.
Just to clarify a few things....again! Seems to be a trend in this country, poor journalism in my eyes! I wasn't referring to Janujaz...- Jack Wilshere (@JackWilshere) October 9, 2013
The question was should foreign players be allowed to play for England, and in my opinion I don't think they should! He is a great player...- Jack Wilshere (@JackWilshere) October 9, 2013
When asked about whether foreign players should be allowed to play for England, Wilshere had replied: "We have to remember what we are. We are English. We tackle hard, are tough on the pitch and are hard to beat.
"We have great characters. You think of Spain and you think technical but you think of England and you think they are brave and they tackle hard. We have to remember that."
Wilshere also prefers to see an English coach in charge of the international side, despite being given his chance by Fabio Capello.
He added on Tuesday: "Don't get me wrong, Capello did a lot for my England career.
"He brought me here, gave me my debut and stuck with me from a young age so he was a good manager. But I think it would be better if there was an Englishman."
The situation with players is not clear cut though. There have been plenty of non-English born players who have worn the Three Lions, whilst of the present Under-21 squad, Raheem Sterling was born in Jamaica and Wilfried Zaha in Ivory Coast.
"It's a difficult one," admitted England U21 coach Gareth Southgate. "He (Januzaj) has not played for anyone else.
"We have lots of boys in our squad who were not born here, whose families have fled here.
"There are some wonderful stories and they are all incredibly proud to play for England. I'm torn with it. The world is changing. People move and work abroad.
"It is important to know why someone wants to play for you. We seem to have embraced the cricket team that has won the Ashes but it is a really interesting, philosophical debate."