Sheffield United defender George Baldock has revealed he has had talks about playing for the Greece national team.
The 26-year-old qualifies through his grandmother on his father’s side of the family and has been targeted ahead of the start of their 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.
Baldock has caught the eye during his first season in the Premier League, starting every match as Chris Wilder’s team have mounted a surprise challenge for European football.
England boss Gareth Southgate has visited Bramall Lane on several occasions this season but right-back Baldock has to contend with the likes of Trent Alexander Arnold, Kieran Trippier and Kyle Walker for the Three Lions, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Reece James adding to the competition.
On the possibility of representing Greece, Baldock said: “There could be a possibility there.
“I don’t want to say too much because we are not there yet and there’s a long way to go, a lot of paperwork involved with passports et cetera.
“I am a quarter Greek so there is potential there if I can and they want me. It would be a great honour.
“I can’t really say too much more, but if it happens it would be brilliant. Until then my full focus is on Sheffield United.”
That focus will centre on a challenge for European football through the Premier League and the FA Cup.
The Blades have been a revelation this season. Many tipped them for an immediate return to the Championship following promotion but the club’s first top-flight campaign for 12 years has been a resounding success so far.
Wilder’s side are eighth in the Premier League, just five points behind fourth-placed Chelsea with a game in hand, and through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, where they will host Arsenal later this month.
“With the prospect of Europe and Wembley lingering around, it’s only natural to think about it,” admitted Baldock. “But we lnow there’s a lot of hard work ahead if we want those rewards.
“Of course there is excitement there but we know we have to be at our best to get there, it’s not going to be given to us.
“We’ve all dedicated everything to this season and we are very grateful to get the opportunity. We don’t want to pass it up, it would be stupid of us not to do everything we can to make the most of the position we’ve put ourselves in.”