All players are now eligible to be called up if needed by the black stars
Eddie Nketiah and Callum Hudson-Odoi appear to give up on their England chances as they are reportedly set to switch allegiances to Ghana.
The Arsenal striker leads the England Under-21 side’s all-time scoring list, while Chelsea winger Hudson-Odoi made three appearances for the senior team back in 2019.
Nketiah, who has scored four goals in his last four Premier League appearances, has previously made 17 appearances for the England Under-21 set-up.
Despite scoring 16 goals at Under-21 level, he has yet to secure an international cap for the senior squad.
Hudson-Odoi, meanwhile, has made competitive appearances for Gareth Southgate’s squad when he was still a teenager, during the qualifiers for Euro 2020.
A FIFA rule change in September 2020 allows players with no more than three caps to change their allegiance if those caps came before their 21st birthday.
Should both men officially make the switch, it will boost their chances of playing at this year’s World Cup in Qatar.
Ghana qualified for the tournament and will play in a group alongside Portugal, Uruguay and South Korea.
While England are stacked in forward positions, it would still come as a blow to Southgate, who will have a slightly smaller pool of players to choose from.
At club level, both men have not had the easiest of times for their respective clubs this season.
Nketiah made just three short cameo appearances in Arsenal’s opening 20 league games of the season.
It’s said that Nketiah has rejected a number of Arsenal contract offers this season, which would leave him able to depart on a free transfer when his contract expires this summer.
He made his first league start in the 1-0 defeat to Southampton and has started every game since.
His braces against former sides Chelsea and Leeds have helped put Arsenal in a commanding position to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Hudson-Odoi has made 28 appearances in all competitions, scoring three goals and providing six assists.
However, he has been out of action since January with an achilles tendon injury.
He made his international debut in a 5-0 victory over the Czech Republic in 2019, before later playing games against Montenegro and Kosovo that same year.
Hudson-Odoi caused controversy when he turned down the opportunity to play for the England Under-21 team last year, so that he could focus on fighting for his place at Chelsea.
The Williams brothers were born to Ghanaian parents who emigrated to the European nation over two decades ago.
According to a report by Ghanasoccernet, the duo have finally agreed and accepted to play for the country of their parents.
The report suggests the Ghana Football Association (GFA) has also begun the processes to facilitate their nationality switch.
Should this happen, Inaki and Nico will be available to feature at the 2022 World Cup later this year in Qatar.
The Black Stars have been paired in a tough Group H, where they’ll be facing Portugal, Uruguay and South Korea.
Meanwhile, in an interview in 2021, Inaki turned down the opportunity to play for Ghana, insisting he didn’t want to unfairly take the place of any Ghanaian footballer in the national team.
“My parents are from Accra and I really enjoy going there. But I wasn’t born or raised there, my culture’s here, and there are players for whom it would mean more,” he told the Guardian.
“I don’t think it would be right to take the place of someone who really deserves to go and who feels Ghana 100%.”
The 27-year-old also stated that he only has eyes for Spain, explaining that he feels more Spanish than Ghanaian despite having Ghanaian parents.
“I’m grateful to where I grew and became who I am. Ghana tried to convince me, but I was born in Spain, in Bilbao.
“I won’t ever forget my family roots, but I feel Basque and can’t con anyone. I would be comfortable with Ghana, I’m sure, but I shouldn’t be there,” he added.