Aarons 'fully focused' on U21 Euros with England amid Jamaica interest

Max Aarons of Norwich in action during the Sky Bet Championship match at Carrow Road, Norwich
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Norwich right-back Max Aarons in full flight during victory over Luton at Carrow Road - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Sealing a place in the England Under-21s squad ahead of the European Championship group stage is the only focus for Norwich City ace Max Aarons, who currently has no interest in switching allegiance to Jamaica.

The Caribbean nation have started a push to try and recruit established players with Jamaican roots that haven't been capped in a competitive fixture by England, with West Ham striker Michail Antonio signalling his intent to join up for World Cup qualifying.

Other players targeted include former Canaries winger Nathan Redmond, Newcastle midfielder Isaac Hayden and former Leicester winger Demarai Gray.

Aarons confirmed he could be eligible for Jamaica but, still only aged 21 and with hopes of one day representing England at senior level, his current priority is adding to his nine caps at U21 level.

“I am able to play for Jamaica but I never heard anything from them or whatever," he explained after City's 3-0 win over Luton on Saturday. "I’m fully focused on the England Under-21s at the minute, we’ve got a big European Championship coming up. 

“So that’s all that my focus has been on. It was quite odd for me because I’d never heard anything and then when you see it, I had people messaging me, a few family members from Jamaica, and I had to say that I hadn’t heard anything. 

“But these things happen and the better you do, the more is going to be spoken about you. 

“It’s my dad’s side of the family. My cousin, Rolando, who is at Huddersfield, I think is in the process of maybe making the decision so that might have been where the link has come from. 

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“But my full focus is definitely on England.” 

The right-back played regularly in qualification for the U21 Euros and is hoping to be named in the squad for the group stages ahead of games later this month in Slovenia against the U21s of Switzerland, Portugal and Croatia.

The knockout stages of the rearranged tournament are due to kick-off in late May, by which time Aarons is hoping to be a Premier League player again, but he has still been selected by Young Lions boss Aidy Boothroyd since relegation.

“He’s been really good and the way we’ve been playing and, I’d like to think, the way that I’ve been playing, is really good when looking towards that," he continued. 

“I can’t wait to get going, it’s a big competition. There’s a lot with the pressure that comes here at Norwich with getting back to the Premier League, and there’s that big pressure with England as well. 

“So we have to deal with that and hopefully do really well.” 

MORE: England U21s boss full of praise for Canaries star

Beating Luton on Saturday moved the Canaries 11 points clear of third place with 11 games remaining, thanks to a seventh win on the spin.

It keeps Daniel Farke's squad in prime position for promotion and Aarons believes City have already proved they can handle the pressure of expectation. 

“Being the favourites doesn’t mean it automatically happens, we had to readjust to the league and how the football is different from the Premier League and go from there," he added. 

“I think we adapted really well and now you can see that.” 

MORE: Aarons on the January bid that City turned down

The youngster emerged as a key part of the squad which won the Championship title in 2019 and has started all 35 league matches so far this season.

He is excited about the prospect of another title triumph but admits the success of the season so far hasn't been as satisfying with the majority of the campaign played behind closed doors. 

“It’s very different, of course," Aarons concluded. "It’s different without the fans here and that’s probably one of the main factors. 

“You’re winning the game and there’s no kind of cheer or anything like that. So it’s harder in that sense but we know the job we’ve got to do and if we can then hopefully the fans will be back for next season.” 

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