Responding to suggestions that England players are keen to avoid their international duties, the FA is considering implementing a humiliating punishment for those who seek to ignore a call-up.
Former Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has claimed that players would rather dedicate themselves to club rather than country, but a harsh new disciplinary system may combat that trend.
Sources inside the FA have hinted that any England player who dodges representing his nation may face the indignity of having to hoof a ball around lethargically every few weeks, either at Wembley Stadium or at a venue elsewhere in Europe, while fans jeer and boo.
Every other year, players who consistently offend may be forced to take part in either three and four games during their summer holiday.
“We simply cannot stand by and allow top English players to ignore international call-ups,” an anonymous source told FourFourTwo.
“While it may be seen as something of a harsh measure, there is a proposal that anyone ducking an England call should be forced to give up a free evening to play in a poorly organised, demotivated team of their peers against more talented players from other countries who have fought hard to be there.
“Players don’t respond to fines, but they do respond to public humiliation and there is no greater humiliation we could come up with than being part of one of these teams.”
Ex-Arsenal striker Ian Wright has proposed an alternative that players rejecting an England call should have to call the parents of soldiers killed in Afghanistan to explain why, but that option has been rejected as it has gently been pointed out that a bereaved family may not want to field a call from a Premier League layabout.
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