Jamaica ‘draw up TEN-MAN shortlist of English stars they hope to tempt into switching allegiance for 2026 World Cup’
JAMAICA have drawn up a list of English-based players they are trying to recruit for the World Cup in the 2026.
The Reggae Boyz did not make it to Qatar 2022, meaning their only appearance at a finals was in France 1998 when they were knocked out in the group stage.
But the chance of them featuring at a second World Cup has increased due to Canada, USA and Mexico hosting the tournament, leaving the CONCACAF qualification section wide open.
Jamaica's shortlist of targets reportedly includes Premier League stars Demarai Gray, Rico Henry, Max Aarons, Morgan Gibbs-White and Nathan Ferguson according to the Mirror.
They're also supposedly interested in Joel Latibeaudiere of Swansea, Lewis Baker of Stoke, Arsenal wonderkid Kido Taylor Hart, Chelsea teenager Luke Badley-Morgan and Fulham youngster Xavier Benjamin.
West Ham striker Michail Antonio made the switch in allegiance from England to Jamaica last summer. He has since played six times, scoring three goals.
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He has joined a squad that features recognisable names such as Ethan Pinnock, Ravel Morrison, Leon Bailey, Jamal Lowe, Kemar Roofe, Andre Gray and Bobby Decordova-Reid.
The Jamaica manager is Paul Hall and his former team-mate Fitzroy Simpson is assisting the recruitment drive.
Simpson said: "(Hall is) determined to put together a strong attempt to qualify for 2026.
"There are a lot of players out there who could help us and are interested.
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"These guys could be playing in the World Cup in 2026 and Paul sees them as a massive part of that drive to dominate the CONCACAF.
"Paul is willing to hand these guys an opportunity which could see them become first choice internationals.
"Of course England is the mother country to a lot of these players but they have a vast pool of players to call upon.
"You can be an outstanding player but never get a look in with the senior England side.
"I obviously thought about maybe playing for England too but I made the decision to play for Jamaica and it was one of the best things I ever did."
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