Nolan reveals 'small club' limitations for England dream

September 6, 2006

Kevin Nolan believes his England chances have been affected by the perception of Bolton as a small club.

The 24-year-old has yet to win a senior cap but has been tipped to be given a chance at some stage by new national team boss Steve McClaren.

However, the Liverpudlian believes he would have already received greater recognition if he was playing for one of the Premiership's `big four'.

'To be quite honest, I am pretty sure I would have broken into the England squad by now if I was playing for Manchester United or Liverpool,' he said.

'I do think the Bolton thing holds you back a bit. No disrespect to them at all but some people see them as a smaller club - clearly I disagree with that.

'But if I was playing for United or Liverpool I think I would have had a couple of chances with the squad.'

Nolan, who has had discussions with Republic of Ireland manager Steve Staunton about the possibility of playing for them, insists he has great support and backing from Wanderers boss Sam Allardyce.

Nolan wrote in his column for BBC Sport Online: '(Sam) has always been very supportive of my cause and it is always a boost to hear him say I should be in the England squad.

'He is not stupid, he knows if he builds up my confidence I will play better football and I am the sort of player who needs an arm around my shoulder from time to time, which Sam is very good at.'