WALES boss Chris Coleman will talk to Aaron Ramsey before he firms up his interest in trying to convince Stoke City defender Ryan Shawcross to pledge his allegiance to Wales, writes Michael Pearlman
Ex-Fulham manager Coleman has vowed to leave no stone unturned in unearthing eligible players and Shawcross, who spent time this side of the Severn Bridge at school age, would meet the criteria to switch allegiances despite representing England at Under-21 level.
However, the matter is complicated by the fact Shawcross is inextricably linked to Wales’ skipper Ramsey after a late tackle broke his leg in February 2010.
Shawcross was sent off and led off the pitch in tears and immediately apologised to Ramsey who was sidelined for almost a year. However Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger somewhat inflamed the situation with comments about the tackle and bad blood between the two sides lingers to this day.
Ramsey is Wales’ captain and Coleman will seek his approval before making a decision on Shawcross.
“I will speak to Aaron, not now, I want him to concentrate on what he’s doing (with the Team GB Olympic side).
“But if there is a conversation to take place about Ryan Shawcross, if that’s a road we go down of course I’ll talk to Aaron, there are issues, we all know what happened, I’m not going to shy away from it. Aaron is our captain and an important player for the next ten years so of course I take his views on board.”
Coleman is also eyeing a possible conversion for Cardiff City defender Ben Turner, who has a Welsh grandparent.
“My job is to try and improve Wales. You’ve got Shawcross and Ben Turner who I know from Coventry who is a very good centre back. You’ve got to look at these players and ask if they can help us and make us better.”