Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford makes Ireland decision despite Gareth Southgate's England snub

The Whites striker is eligible to represent both England and the Republic of Ireland at international level.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 3:35 pm
Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford. Pic: Getty

Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford has officially closed the door on an international future with the Republic of Ireland.

The Whites top goalscorer qualifies for the nation through a grandparent and there had been hopes previously he may switch allegiance.

Bamford narrowly missed out on an England call for the current March international break, with Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate opting to select Aston Villa's Ollie Watkins instead.

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United's number nine was told he was "very close" to being included by Southgate in his latest squad and the decision caused debate among supporters.

The 27-year-old has been in impressive form under Marcelo Bielsa in the top flight this term, scoring 14 goals and bagging six assists.

Bamford earned one cap for Ireland at Under-18s level before switching to represent England's youth teams up until the Under-21s age category.

Previous Republic head coaches Martin O'Neill and Mick McCarthy both failed to lure him back to the senior international stage with the Boys in Green.

Current boss Stephen Kenny has now revealed that the Leeds man has completely ruled out any possible inclusion in his squad.

“He has a relationship with Damien Doyle, our fitness coach,” Kenny said over Bamford.

“They were together at MK Dons for a while and Damien had been speaking to him, just chatting to him, and at that stage he said that he wouldn’t like to stand in the way of another Irishman.

“He said he wouldn’t want to do that, that his desire is to play for England. So I never actually got to speak to him because he said that his ambition was to play for England.”