England news

Gerrard wants to see Arteta earn England call-up

August 14, 2010
By Soccernet staff

England captain Steven Gerrard says he would "love" to see Everton's Spanish midfielder Mikel Arteta called up by Fabio Capello.

Mikel Arteta
GettyImagesMikel Arteta has been linked with several clubs this summer

Arteta has never won a cap for his native Spain, with Vicente del Bosque enjoying perhaps the finest crop of midfielders in the country's history in Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas and Xabi Alonso.

The World Cup winners look to have little use for Everton's best player and having lived in England for more than five years, Arteta could apply for a British passport, making him eligible for any of the home nations.

The selection of a foreign player is a strategy that has been employed by many countries in the past - including Spain who won Euro 2008 with the Brazilian-born Marcos Senna anchoring their midfield - but selecting Arteta would certainly generate controversy.

However, Gerrard feels that the midfielder, who signed a new contract at Goodison Park this summer, would be a worthy addition to an England team looking to reinvent itself following a poor World Cup campaign.

"I'd certainly love nothing better than to see Mikel Arteta available for England," Gerrard told talkSPORT. "You want to play with the best players, and if it makes the England squad better, of course I'd like to see it.

"I think it happens to most national teams [that they pick non-nationals], but it's up to him if he wants to make himself available. Fabio Capello is the man to answer the question because he's the manager, but for me he's an excellent player."