West Ham

Michail Antonio to switch allegiance from England to Jamaica

Mitchell Wilks
Feb 25, 2021, 1:15 PM GMT
Antonio is poised for a switch of allegiance
Antonio is poised for a switch of allegiance | Visionhaus/Getty Images
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Michail Antonio is set to switch his international allegiance from England to Jamaica after being approached to play in the Caribbean nation's 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.

Antonio has previously been called up to the England squad by both Sam Allardyce and Gareth Southgate, but is yet to earn full international honours for the Three Lions.

According to the Telegraph., the Jamaica Football Federation have approached Antonio and wish to include him in the squad for their CONCACAF qualifiers this autumn.

Antonio is expected to accept the approach and switch allegiances.

Jamaica had previously tried to secure Antonio for the national side back in 2016, but he rebuffed the offer in order to concentrate on breaking into the England setup. His first call up for England came later that year, but he failed to get on the field. He was included in the squad by Southgate in March 2017, but injury forced him to withdraw.

The 30-year-old will miss out on Jamaica's international friendlies next month, but he would be able to link up with Theodore Whitmore's national side in time for the World Cup qualifiers later in the year.

If he completes the switch, Antonio would join fellow Premier League forward Bobby Decordova-Reid in the side, as well as free agent Ravel Morrison, who debuted for the Reggae Boyz in November 2020.

Antonio has been in fine form for West Ham this season, racking up nine goal contributions from 17 appearances as the Irons knock on the door for a finish in European positions under David Moyes, and even remain in with a chance of an unlikely Champions League finish.

Switching to Jamaica's national team would virtually guarantee Antonio some international playing time. Jamaica haven't qualified for the World Cup since 1998, when they finished third in group H, but managed a win against Japan.

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