Capello will not be drawn on Arteta

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Football News

Fabio Capello insists he cannot consider picking Mikel Arteta for England at the moment.

The England manager has reportedly met with the Spanish midfielder, who could be eligible to play for England under residency grounds but is thought not to have applied yet for British citizenship.

When asked directly about the Everton player, Capello said: "I like to speak about the players that I can select. When I can select (him) I can speak about him. I can't select (him) because he is not English. I prefer to speak about the players I can select."

The Football Association also confirmed they are yet to be asked by Capello about the prospect of selecting Arteta.

"We have not discussed the matter as a policy, as we have not been in a position where the manager wants to select a 'dual passport player'," said an FA spokesman.

Arteta has previously spoken positively about the idea, given his chances of a call-up for Spain are virtually non-existent due to the presence of superstars such as Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas.

Yet such a move would be loaded with controversy given the Spain-born star represented the country of his birth at Under-21 level and a gentleman's agreement is also said to be in place amongst the Home Nations specifying that to qualify for an international call-up you must either have been born in the country, have a parent or grandparent born in the country or have spent five years in education in the country before the age of 18.

Should Capello approach the Football Association on the matter, all these issues will have to be taken into consideration.

Some feel it would dilute the value of the England side, others that the move would be no different to appointing "outsiders" such as Capello and Sven-Goran Eriksson, as manager.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Mikel Arteta
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