Steven Caulker has opened up on getting in touch with Scotland manager Steve Clarke to see “what his views were” before Euro 2020 as the defender looked to commit his future to playing in dark blue at international level – and insists there are “no hard feeling” after being rejected.

Caulker has long been touted as a possible option for the national team but is now set to make his debut for Sierra Leone – almost a decade after making his sole appearance in the England side.

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Steven Caulker celebrates after scoring a goal during Ziraat Turkish Cup soccer match between Aytemiz Alanyaspor and BuyukSehir Belediye Erzurumspor (Photo by Mustafa Ciftci/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

With Caulker’s only cap coming in a friendly, he remained eligible to switch to Scotland thanks to a Scottish grandmother but was rebuffed after making contact directly with Clarke to find out whether he was under consideration for a place in his squad ahead of the Euros.

“I did call him (Clarke) because I wanted to know first-hand what his views were,” Caulker said [Football Scotland]

“Many people jumped on this bandwagon or this idea that I wanted to play for Scotland because they were in the Euros whereas my interest was from way before.

“I just wanted to have a conversation. He told me quite frankly that firstly, he was pleased with what his defenders had done, which I respected, and secondly, because of coronavirus, he was not able to get to Turkey to watch me.

 

“While he said that might be something he would potentially do at a later date, he was sticking with what he had for the moment.

“There are no hard feelings or anything like that. He was straight up with me, which is all I asked for.”

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