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England Fly-Half Set For Potential International Switch To European Minnows

England Fly-Half Set For Potential International Switch To European Minnows
By Daniel Kelly
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It's almost four years since Toby Flood last played for England, but his international career may not be over just yet.

Flood has been ineligible to play for England since moving to Toulouse in 2014, but he rejoined Newcastle Falcons this summer. Only those playing for Aviva Premiership clubs can play for England, meaning the 32-year-old could conceivably line out for England this autumn.

Eddie Jones is unlikely to call on the services of Flood again, and the fly-half is prepared to play for one of Europe's up-and-coming sides. Flood's maternal grandfather Albert Lieven was German, and moved to England during World War 2.

In an interview with The Times, Flood revealed he applied for a German passport after Brexit. If his application is successful, there is very little to stop him playing for the Germans in their bid to qualify for the 2019 World Cup.

If there was any way of trying to help a fledgeling rugby country, it would interest me.

I have always been proud of being German. My mum is the last remaining true Lieven and she went back to Germany about 10 years ago to put together the family tree so if there was a chance to connect into that it would be great.


Flood will be able to use a loophole that was introduced ahead of the 2016 Olympics to switch nations. Any player can move teams, provided the have a second passport and have not played Test rugby for the past 18 months.


Germany are currently 21st in the World Rankings. It's their highest ever position, and the underage game is thriving in the country.

Last season, the team finished in fifth place in the Rugby Europe Championship. The tournament is a level below the Six Nations and includes the likes of Georgia, Romania and Russia.

If Flood was to play for Germany, he would need to play for their Sevens team first in an Olympic qualification event, before being deemed eligible to play a Test match. Although he has not played that form of the game before, the idea of lining out for the Sevens team doesn't phase him.


Sevens is not my forte. I could kick off and then walk of. Or come on with three seconds to go like a lot of my England caps.

Germany and England have never played each other in a Test match. The potential Flood switch could make a guaranteed one-sided match, that little bit interesting, if they were to meet in the near future.

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