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Grealish forced to wait for England debut

Jack Grealish will have to wait until 2016 before being considered for his first England appearance as his wait for international clearance from FIFA continues.

English-born Grealish represented Republic of Ireland at youth level, having been eligible through his grandparents.

The 20-year-old rejected a call-up to the Martin O’Neill’s squad in May and, in September, confirmed his desire to switch his allegiances to England.

However, FIFA confirmed the Aston Villa midfielder is yet to receive clearance to be considered for the country of his birth, with Roy Hodgson announcing his squad for this month’s friendlies against Spain and France on Thursday.

“We can confirm having been contacted by the Football Association with a request for change of association of the player Jack Grealish,” a FIFA spokesperson said.

“The matter is pending and being investigated by our services and, as a result, we are not in a position to comment on it any further nor to give an estimation as to the relevant time line.”

Grealish was asked to train with England ahead of the final round of Euro 2016 qualifying fixtures, but former Villa boss Tim Sherwood – who has now been replaced by Remi Garde – blocked the opportunity.

The next opportunity for Grealish to make his England bow will come in friendlies against Germany and Netherlands in March.

Wed 4 Nov, 2015
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