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30 Premier League era England one cap wonders after Lingard call

| 17.11.2015

Jamie Clark and Holly Thackeray | November 16, 2015

Debate rages during every international break about how easy it is to get an England cap nowadays.

During his reign to date, Roy Hodgson has used 66 different players as Three Lions manager, handing out 32 senior debuts. That could become 33 if latest call-up Jesse Lingard gets on the field in the end of year Wembley friendly with France.

That Coral’s football experts thinking about who during the last 20 years has made just one international appearance? Check out our definitive list below…

Dean Ashton

SOCCER - England training session - Carrington
Former Norwich City and West Ham United target man Ashton had some really lousy luck. When called up for the first time by Steve McClaren, Shaun Wright-Phillips’ tackle in training damaged his ankle so badly that he missed a year of action. Fabio Capello did cap Ashton against Trinidad and Tobago on June 1st 2008, but injuries later forced him to retire.

Michael Ball

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Spain

Playing top-flight football for Everton, Rangers, PSV Eidnhoven and Manchester City, left back Ball was one of many given an opportunity to represent the Three Lions by Sven-Goran Eriksson. He was a half-time substitute for Chris Powell in friendly fixture with Spain in 2001.

Joey Barton

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Spain - Old Trafford

Bad boy Barton followed fellow Merseyside native Ball in getting a token cap against the Iberians. Now on the books of Burnley, his sole senior international appearance came in February 2007 under McClaren while Barton played for Manchester City. He’s also played for Newcastle United, QPR and Marseille.

Jay Bothroyd

Soccer - International Friendly - England v France - Wembley Stadium

Current J-League star and striker Bothroyd struggled in the Premier League before finding his comfort zone with Cardiff City. Always in double digits for the Bluebirds, the forward’s Championship form resulted in a friendly cap against France in 2010, as he became Cardiff’s first ever England international.

Lee Bowyer

England v Portugal - Alan Smith

Leeds United fan favourite Bowyer saw off-field issues stall his international selection, though when finally called upon to face Portugal, in his first and only Three Lions appearance, the midfielder contributed an assist for clubmate Alan Smith.

Fraizer Campbell

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Netherlands - England Training and Press Conference - Wembley Stadium

This Manchester United-reared marksman was once tipped to be the next big thing, and duly made one substitute appearance in England colours under interim boss Stuart Pearce. Now a squad player at Crystal Palace.

Steven Caulker

Soccer - UEFA European Under 21 Championship 2013 - Group A - England v Italy - Bloomfield Stadium

Currently rebuilding his career on loan to Southampton after an ill-advised move to QPR, Caulker was another apparently destined for greatness and bagged a goal on his England bow versus Sweden in 2012. Scotland could yet snatch the centre half for themselves, however, as Caulker only featured in a friendly.

Kevin Davies

Soccer - UEFA Euro 2012 - Qualifying - Group G - England v Montenegro - Wembley

In 2010, all-action former Southampton striker Davies became the oldest England debutant for sixty years at age 33, in a Euro 2012 qualifier against Montenegro, when the scrapper was characteristically cautioned. He is still toiling today for Preston North End.

David Dunn

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Portugal

Best known for various stints with boyhood club Blackburn Rovers, defender Dunn was once en vogue and made one substitute appearance for England against Portugal, but was never invited back to Wembley.

Jon Flanagan

Soccer - World Cup 2014 - Miami Training Camp - England v Ecuador - Sun Life Stadium

Flanagan was famously, and puzzlingly, put on the stand-by list for England’s 2014 World Cup squad, though previously made his bow versus Ecuador. However, the Liverpool full-back is now firmly back in the international wilderness.

Anthony Gardner

England training session

As a substitute for skipper John Terry is how injury-prone defender Gardener grabbed a cap, having impressed for Tottenham in 2004 before going on to play for Hull City, Crystal Palace and Sheffield Wednesday, though the Owls released him.

Steve Guppy

Soccer - Friendly - England v Belgium

Surely everyone remembers Celtic and Leeds winger Guppy, though it was while at Leicester City the wideman made his one and only England venture versus Belgium. Still, he holds the record for being the only player to have turned out for England Under-21, England semi-pro, England B and the senior Three Lions set-up.

Lee Hendrie

Soccer - Friendly - England v France U21s - Pride Park, Derby

Journeyman Hendrie claimed a cap as a late substitute against the Czech Republic in 1998, after catching the eye at Aston Villa, one of 17 clubs the midfield man went on to play for, including Stoke City and Derby County.

Danny Ings

Soccer - UEFA European Under-21 Championship - Group B - England v Italy - Ander Stadium

A season-ending injury to Liverpool summer signing Ings means he won’t be adding to his single cap against Lithuania at the end of Euro 2016 qualifying any time soon.

Matt Jarvis

Soccer - UEFA Euro 2012 - Qualifying - Group G - Wales v England - England Training - London Colney

Winger Jarvis became the first Wolverhampton Wanderer player since Steve Bull to represent England when Capello called him up and capped him against Ghana in a March 2011 friendly. He left Molineux for West Ham and is now on loan at Norwich.

Francis Jeffers

Soccer - European Under 21 Championships 2004 Qualifier - Group Seven - England v Turkey

What an auspicious start striker Jeffers had to his international career at Everton and then Arsenal. Given the nod by Eriksson to play in a embarrassing Three Lions defeat against Australia in 2003, Jeffers netted a consolation goal on his only appearance.

Carl Jenkinson

Soccer - International Under 21 Friendly - England v Portugal - Turf Moor

Switching international allegiance from Finland after representing them at youth level, Arsenal-owned Jenkinson opted for the land of his father and Hodgson handed him a senior England bow in the 4-2 end of year 2012 friendly loss to Sweden. He’s yet to add to that, despite encouraging loan spells with West Ham.

Seth Johnson

International Soccer - Under 21 Friendly - England v Portugal

Midfielder Johnson, best known for spells with Derby County and Leeds, received his sole international appearance under England caretaker Peter Taylor, who brought him off the bench against Italy in November 2000.

Martin Kelly

Soccer - UEFA European Under 21 Championship 2013 - Group Eight - England v Belgium - Riverside Stadium

Capped once against Norway in the run up to Euro 2012, Kelly made the tournament squad in place of the injured Gary Cahill, but has seen no international action since. The Liverpool academy product now plays for Crystal Palace.

Chris Kirkland

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Greece - Old Trafford

Injury-prone goalkeeper Kirkland played the second-half of McClaren’s first match in charge of England against Greece in August 2006.

Ryan Mason

Soccer - International Friendly - Italy v England - Juventus Stadium

Fabian Delph’s injury means Spurs midfielder Mason may be in line for a second cap and so will no longer qualify for this list. His only senior international appearance to date was off the bench against Italy in March 2015, assisting Andros Townsend’s goal in Turin.

Gavin McCann

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Spain

Former Everton, Sunderland, Aston Villa and Bolton midfielder McCann is yet another given a solitary international outing against Spain under Eriksson in 2001.

David Nugent


Best known for stealing a goal off Jermain Defoe against Andorra in March 2007, Nugent follows Jeffers above as one of three players in Three Lions history to have a single appearance and score on the occasion.

Michael Ricketts

International Soccer - Friendly - Holland v England

Playing a half against the Netherlands in February 2002, Ricketts was rewarded for terrific scoring form for Bolton, but his cap proved a curse as he failed to net again that season. He also turned out for Middlesbrough and Leeds among others.

Jay Rodriguez

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Chile - Wembley Stadium

Burnley academy product Rodriguez’s switch to Southampton proved prolific at first, and Hodgson handed out a cap for the forward against Chile in November 2013. A career-threatening knee injury has moved him way down the pecking order.

John Ruddy

Soccer - International Friendly - England v Germany - England Training Session - London Colney

Norwich stopper Ruddy turned out when England met Italy in their first outing after Euro 2012, as Hodgson named an experimental squad to face Italy. He got a half against the Azzurri.

Ryan Shawcross

Soccer - International Friendly - Sweden v England - Friends Arena

Stoke City skipper Shawcross had a torrid time against Zlatan Ibrahimovic on his only international appearance against Sweden in November 2012. A four-goal haul from Ibra in that friendly rather blotted his copybook. Could Wales tempt Shawcross into switching allegiances ahead of Euro 2016?

Chris Sutton

Soccer - Friendly - England v Cameroon

It’s almost criminal that striker Sutton got just one England cap, getting around 10 minutes against Cameroon in November 1997. His fall-out with Glenn Hoddle didn’t help his cause, but he was certainly prolific for Norwich, Blackburn Rovers and Celtic.

Alan Thompson

FOOTBALL England v Sweden

Another Bhoys cult hero and left-footer Thompson became the first player on the books at Parkhead to play for England in a friendly against then-manager Eriksson’s home country Sweden in 2004.

David Unsworth

International England U21 v Austria U21

It’s a little known fact that defender Unsworth’s senior international debut against Japan in 1995 was shared with Gary Neville and Stan Collymore.


Check out our other trivia articles.



Jamie Clark

Athletics aficionado, die-hard snooker fan and Crystal Palace supporter Jamie has written for Coral since February 2014 after spells with Soccerlens and the Press Association as a digital journalist and copywriter. A former East Midlands sports correspondent and Bwin tipster, he is a graduate of both the University of York and University of Sheffield, with a Masters in web journalism from the latter.