Ireland, England and Spain entangled in international tug of war over John Joe Patrick Finn

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The Irish hierarchy have been in contact with Finn in recent weeks, but face stiff competition to secure his declaration.

John Joe Patrick Finn was unknown in the football world up until a couple of months ago.

The 17-year-old made his first team debut for Getafe in December and in doing so became the youngest player in the history of the established side. Since then, he’s gone on to make five further appearances and his stock has increased tenfold.

It now appears that the teenager is involved in an international tug of war between Ireland, England and Spain to secure his international future.

Finn qualifies for Ireland through his late Irish father John, he was born and raised in Spain and his eligibility for England is unknown, however it appears the English FA have made contact, as well as the two aforementioned nations. He also qualifies for Cameroon through his mother, but it’s not clear whether they’ve made contact as of yet.

Jim Crawford, Stephen Kenny and Tom Mohan recently made a call to Finn, which was also attended by his mother, in a play to convince the youngster to declare for Ireland.

“We had a good chat with both of them and he was certainly blown away by the presentation that was put together and by what Stephen, Tom and I had to say.

“We are certainly not going to rush him, but we have made contact. He was overwhelmed and he certainly had a big smile on his face. I’ll be making contact with him in the near future to see if there has been any decision.”

Ireland u21s kick off their European Championships 2023 qualification campaign in March, so Crawford may wish to secure his declaration before then, however as he has mentioned, their intent is not to rush him.

“England U21s have made an approach and Spain U21s have made an approach. He is very well sought after, so all we can do is put our case forward and that’s certainly what we did. Again, the decision is in his hands. But to answer your question, yes, we made an approach”, Crawford also revealed.

Finn’s decision – for the short-term at least – could be revealed sooner rather than later with all three nations’ u21 teams taking the field come March.

However, these things are often not black-and-white.

A decision may not come in the immediate future.

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