McCarthy welcomes decision by Eredivisie midfielder Crowley to declare for Ireland

The ex-Arsenal midfielder has represented England at U19 level.

Crowley in action for Dutch side Willem II against Borussia Dortmund last month.
Crowley in action for Dutch side Willem II against Borussia Dortmund last month.
Image: DPA/PA Images

MICK MCCARTHY HAS welcomed the decision made by former Arsenal and England underage midfielder Dan Crowley to declare for Ireland in the hope of earning a senior cap in the near future.

The 21-year-old has previously represented both Ireland and the Three Lions at U19 level, but last week confirmed to the Irish Independent that he would be applying for an official transfer from Fifa.

Crowley was snapped by up Arsene Wenger’s Gunners from Aston Villa at the age of 16 and caught the eye of Martin O’Neill and Roy Keane during a loan spell with Championship side Barnsley in 2015.

He is currently impressing with Dutch side Willem II in the Eredivisie, so far this season making 23 appearances in the Netherlands’ top-flight where he has scored five goals and teed up six assists.

Soccer - Barclays U21 Premier League - Arsenal U21 v Derby County U21 - Meadow Park Crowley moved to Arsenal in 2016, spending time on loan with Barnsley, Oxford and Dutch side Go Ahead Eagles. Source: EMPICS Sport

Ireland boss McCarthy revealed this past weekend that the FAI would be sending personnel over to watch Crowley in the near future.

The FAI have been working with Danny on this for some time now and Noel King (Player Identification Manager) has made arrangements to go to Holland and watch Danny play,” said McCarthy.

Born in Coventry, Crowley’s grandparents hail from Cork and Waterford on his father’s side of the family, while his mother also has relations that come from Mayo.

He said that he had been in contact with FAI scout Mark O’Toole over his aspirations to earn a senior cap for the Boys in Green going forward.

“I grew up in England and have friends there but never owned an England kit,” Crowley said. “Ireland were the team I supported at the Euro 2016 finals.

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Netherlands: Willem II vs NAC The midfielder has played against Ajax, AZ Alkmaar and Feyenoord this season. Source: SIPA USA/PA Images

“I’ve asked the FAI to process the transfer. I’ll wait for my clearance to come through and would be delighted to be part of the Ireland squad for the Euro 2020 campaign if selected.”

“I had a strong Irish upbringing and spent most of my childhood summers playing sports in Tramore, Co Waterford,” he added.

“Ireland was always the team I supported at international level. I was young at the time but I remember crying my eyes out when Spain won that penalty shoot-out at the 2002 World Cup.”

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