Bundesliga News

Leon Bailey reveals why he refused to play for Jamaica

By Rune Gjerulff   @runegjerulff

Bayer Leverkusen star Leon Bailey was supposed to celebrate his debut for Jamaica on Sunday - but he changed his mind.
Leon Bailey.
Leon Bailey.Photo: Fuguito/CC-by-SA 3.0
Last week, Bayer Leverkusen's Leon Bailey announced that he had accepted a call-up for the Jamaican national team. He was expected to celebrate his international debut in Sunday's game against Bonaire, but wasn't in the squad as he refused to play.

Speaking to Jamaican media outlet The Gleaner, Bailey explains that the Jamaican Football Federation (JFF) had promised to call up his half-brother Kyle Butler as well.

But the Leverkusen star claims they went back on their word because they ultimately demanded that Butler should have a trial before a call-up could come into question.

"Obviously, I came to Jamaica because of the international call-up. I did agree to come based on the agreement we had. But when I got here, it was a totally different scenario. They didn't keep their end (of the deal). Therefore, I decided not to play this game," Bailey said.

Bailey underlines that he still hasn't closed the door to representing Jamaica, and he is open to play in their next game against Suriname on November 17 - but only if his half-brother will also be called up for the team.

"By this November, if they are willing to go ahead with whatever we've asked of them, I'll be ready to represent my country. It (Kyle's snub by the JFF) is a big part of it. I need players who can understand me. You can't expect me to jump in a system and expect it to work. I need help. I am a winner, a Phoenix, and I don't like losing, so I need people who I know are capable of making things happen," Bailey said.

Kyle Butler currently plays for the second team of Austrian club LASK. He still hasn't made his debut for the team.

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