Bolton Wanderers’ left back, Jack Iredale, is stuck in an international tug-of-war, with both Australia and New Zealand fighting for his services, according to journalist Alan Nixon via his Patreon.
Iredale has made an electric start to the season, starting all four of Bolton’s League One games, scoring once as well as starting in their EFL cup win over Barrow. The Wanderers had previously been unbeaten in the league before a shock 4-0 defeat to Wigan on Saturday. Although that result may have thrown a temporary spanner in the works, manager Ian Evatt will be very happy with his side’s start to the new campaign.
One of the most impressive performers has been left-back Iredale and his performances have not gone unnoticed, with both Australia and New Zealand keeping tabs on his situation. There is however some speculation as to who the defender may choose, with ties to both countries
Iredale was in fact born in Scotland, but moved to New Zealand at an early age. He would be on the move again as a youngster, this time to Australia, who he would then go onto represent at the under-17 level.
Spending the first couple of years of his career playing for Perth Glory under-23’s and ECU Joondalup in Australia, Iredale would then complete the move back to Scotland to play for Greenock Morton. Two good years at the Scottish Championship club led to interest from English sides, with Carlisle United landing his signature in 2019. He’d move on a year later to Cambridge United before landing at The Toughseet Community Stadium, where he has been incredibly impressive.
Currently registered as an Australian international, that does seem the most likely choice for the defender. It is believed that the Socceroos’ head coach Graham Arnold will be in attendance in the coming weeks to watch Iredale ahead of a potential first call-up to the national side.
New Zealand are also keen to gain Iredale’s services and having lived in the country as a child, he is also eligible to be picked. Of the two, Australia are currently the higher ranked side, but New Zealand may potentially give Iredale more opportunities. The two countries meet at Wembley in October, so both national countries may send over staff to watch Iredale in action before making any movement.
Bolton manager, Ian Evatt, will just be hoping that it doesn’t cause too much of a headache given Iredale’s impressive start to the season. If able to get over their momentary blip against Wigan, then we should see Bolton be very competitive towards the top of the table this season.
Iredale’s performances over the last two seasons should reward him with an international call-up. I see Australia as the likelier given he had played for their under-17s and is still registered as an Australian, but he may find it harder to get into the Socceroos’ starting eleven. It would be great to see the defender on the national stage and he could really prove his talent as he continues to improve each year. Evatt will be hoping that the situation does not affect his performances at a club level but I don’t see that being a problem currently.