Dyke dismisses Wilshere's England eligibility assessment

The FA chairman does not believe foreign heritage should prevent a player representing the Three Lions, but insisted that determining who qualifies will be a careful process
FA chairman Greg Dyke disagrees with Jack Wilshere's opinion that "only English players should play for England", but admits that a boundary must be drawn for international selection.

The Arsenal midfielder told reporters on Tuesday that players should only represent the nations of their heritage in light of interest in Brussells-born Adnan Januzaj, who is eligible for Belgium, Croatia, Serbia and Albania.

However, Dyke sees the situation as being less straightforward, and insisted that time is needed to handle the matter properly.

"He’s entitled to his opinion but I don’t happen to agree with it," he said at the Leaders in Football conference. "If we only looked at people who were born in the country, Mo Farah wouldn’t have represented the UK at the Olympics.

"I don’t think we’re that far ahead yet. We’ve had discussions a couple of times with the Club England board, we’ll discuss it again and then take a decision on where the line should be drawn."

Dyke went on to note that making a decision on who is eligible to represent England will be a process, one that existed prior to the case of Januzaj.

He contined: "I don’t think it comes down to individuals. [Januzaj's] two goals at the weekend were pretty good but it comes down to what principles we would abide by.

"We ought to look at those and say ‘where do we draw the boundary?’ We are looking at what might be appropriate and that’s the process we’re going through.

"The idea that someone who is not born in this country can never play here is not real. Then you say ‘how long should they be here?’ You have to look at the Fifa rules and see what they say.

"This isn’t a unique situation. We’ve had players before who weren’t born in this country and it happens in other sports. We obviously want players of quality but whether that means you change the basis of the decisions you take ... the question is how hard you push it."