Hudson-Odoi rejects England Under-21 call-up to stay at Chelsea

Callum Hudson-Odoi rejects England Under-21 call-up to ‘work on his development at Chelsea’ as new boss Lee Carsley includes Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott in his first squad

  • Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott received a call up to England’s U21 squad for first time  
  • He’s joined by Tino Livaramento, Cole Palmer, Folarin Balogun and Etienne Green
  • But Chelsea’s Callum Hudson-Odoi has chosen to stay and train with Chelsea 
  • Lee Carsley will take charge for fist time after disappointing Euros exit in April
  • England U21s face Romania U21s and Kosovo in upcoming international break

Callum Hudson-Odoi turned down the chance to form part of Lee Carsley’s first England Under-21 squad that included eye-catching first call-ups.

The Chelsea winger, who has three senior caps and linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge, held amicable talks with the new manager.

Hudson-Odoi started the European Super Cup final but has not played a minute of Chelsea’s opening two Premier League games this season.

Callum Hudson-Odoi has rejected the chance to join the England Under-21 squad

Hudson-Odoi has not played for the Blues in the Premier League so far this season

‘Callum is a player that we really like,’ the 47-year-old said. ‘I’ve had some really good conversations with him and his advisor and Callum felt that it wasn’t the right time for him at the minute to come with England.

‘He’s stayed back at Chelsea to work on his development there. I respected that decision and that was it really.’

Carsley handed places to Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott, Cole Palmer at Manchester City and Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun ahead of a friendly in Romania and a European Championship qualifier against Kosovo. St Etienne goalkeeper Etienne Green, born in Colchester but eligible for France, also makes his bow.

Carsley replaced Aidy Boothroyd after England’s group stage exit at March’s Euros. He had previously assisted Boothroyd before taking over the Under 20s last season and has coached at the Premier League champions, Birmingham City and Brentford.

Lee Carsley will take charge for the first time and he will be assisted by Ashley Cole

England Under 21 squad for upcoming Euro 2023 qualifiers 

Goalkeepers: Joe Bursik (Stoke City), Etienne Green (St. Etienne), Josh Griffiths (Lincoln City, loan from West Bromwich Albion)

Defenders: Max Aarons (Norwich City), Levi Samuels-Colwill (Huddersfield Town, loan from Chelsea), Charlie Cresswell (Leeds United), Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace), Taylor Harwood-Bellis (Anderlecht, loan from Manchester City), Valentino Livramento (Southampton), Ryan Sessegnon (Tottenham Hotspur), Luke Thomas (Leicester City)

Midfielders: Tommy Doyle (Manchester City), Conor Gallagher (Crystal Palace, loan from Chelsea), Jimmy Garner (Nottingham Forest, loan from Manchester United), Curtis Jones (Liverpool)*, Cole Palmer (Manchester City), Jacob Ramsey (Aston Villa), Oliver Skipp (Tottenham Hotspur)

Forwards: Folarin Balogun (Arsenal), Rhian Brewster (Sheffield United), Harvey Elliott (Liverpool), Tyreece John-Jules (Blackpool, loan from Arsenal), Noni Madueke (PSV Eindhoven), Emile Smith-Rowe (Arsenal) 

The former Everton midfielder made clear early in his coaching career that he would shy away from club management.

‘I had the opportunity when I retired to do the Under-18s at Coventry,’ he added. ‘That was a bit of a baptism of fire. I’d gone from 18 months before playing in the Premier League to driving a minibus, doing the college run and dinner run, handing out sandwiches at break time. But it was a brilliant job, I enjoyed it so much. Then I got the opportunity to go to Sheffield United with Davie Weir.

‘I realised early in my coaching career that development football was a big draw for me. I didn’t miss that buzz of 3 o’ clock on a Saturday like some players do when they retire.

‘I really enjoy the development side of it, working with players and seeing them get better throughout the week or year on their journey.

‘I’ve progressed steadily enough and resisted the temptation to go into first-team football. I now find myself in the privileged position of being England Under-21 manager.’


Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott has been handed his first England Under-21 call up.

The midfielder joins James Garner, Cole Palmer, Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Valentino Livramento, Charlie Cresswell and Jacob Ramsey in Lee Carsley’s new-look squad.

The Young Lions play Romania in a friendly in Bucharest next week before their opening Euro 2023 qualifier against Kosovo in Milton Keynes on September 7.

Harvey Elliott has impressed for Liverpool this season and is in Jurgen Klopp’s plans 

Valentino Livramento has impressed for Southampton since £5m move from Chelsea

Elliott is now in Liverpool’s first-team squad after his loan spell at Blackburn Rovers last season. He was in the starting XI for the Reds’ win over Norwich last week and impressed with his ability to keep the ball moving. 

Following his £5million move from Chelsea, Southampton’s Valentino Livramento has made a good impression with his new club and makes the U21 side for the first time. 

He is joined by former Chelsea team-mates Marc Guehi – now of Crystal Palace –  and Conor Gallagher, who is on loan at the south London club. 

Folarin Balogun has been involved in Arsenal’s Premier League games this season 

Another notable inclusion is Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun. The striker was in the starting XI for their season opener against Brentford and came off the bench in the defeat to Chelsea.  

Despite not being called up to the senior squad, Manchester United striker Mason Greenwood is not involved. Callum Hudson-Odoi also misses out. 

Goalkeeper Etienne Green, who plays for St Etienne in Ligue 1, has been given his first England call-up at any level after previously representing France at international level. 

New boss Lee Carsley, who will now be assisted by Ashley Cole, will take charge for the first time after the side’s early Euros exit in April – under the reign of Aidy Boothroyd.  

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