Carl Jenkinson is hoping that his loan spell at Birmingham will help him get back into the England fold in comments that should be admired for their ambition, if nothing else.
With a contract at Arsenal until 2020 and wages that few other clubs can (or are willing to) match, it may be some time before Jenkinson moves on from Arsenal on a permanent basis. It’s not that there isn’t interest in him- there is – but not at £45k-per-week.
Carl knows that his future most likely lies away from Arsenal, but his main goal presently is getting back in the England squad.
“My main ambition to play for England again,” said Jenkinson
“That’s something that’s in the back of my mind and getting back playing this season is going to be a stepping stone towards that.
“I want to crack on and play at the highest level again. Whether that’s at Arsenal or whether I end up moving on time will tell, but I’m not focusing too much past this season.
“I’d love to play for England again and in the back of my mind I really believe I can do that.
“But for the time being I’ve just got to focus on the short term and that’s playing regularly here and hopefully I can push on from that.
“My career to a certain extent was at a standstill last season because I wasn’t playing, so you take a step back and reset your goals and think about what you really want to achieve in the rest of your career.
“I would love to pull on an England shirt again and that’s one of the goals I set myself for the rest of my career – to get back to that level.
“I’ve still got three years left at Arsenal. I might have to look elsewhere but I’m not looking past this season.
“I’ll assess where I am at the end of the season. I’ve vowed to myself I just want to be playing football now.
“I’ve had a spell out and I want to make sure I’m playing football for the rest of my career, wherever that is.
“I like to think I’ve still got seven or eight years where I can play at the top level. But I’m 25 now, I’m not a kid anymore, so I need to be playing every week.
“I’ve got a lot of friends who have played in the Championship and I know it’s tough but I also know there’s a lot of quality.
“I am looking forward to tasting it week in, week out.”
Jenkinson signed for Arsenal six years ago for the nominal fee of £1m. Despite hailing from a family of lifelong Gooners and showing an unrivalled passion for the club, his ability never matched his ambition and an Arsenal career always seemed like a bit of a stretch for him.
Various loan spells have shown that he certainly has what it takes to construct a decent career at a high level, but it would certainly seem like a future at Arsenal is beyond him.
Whether he’s able to claim a place in the England squad remains to be seen, but it would appear highly improbable at this point.