Andy Carroll looks set to be handed his maiden England call-up after the Newcastle striker was left out of the under-21 squad for Tuesday's friendly in Germany.
Carroll has been widely tipped to be selected by Fabio Capello for Wednesday's senior friendly with France and his omission from the Young Lions party will only serve to fuel that speculation.
However, the 21-year-old was also left out by head coach Stuart Pearce for last month's UEFA Under-21 Championship play-off with Romania and that did not lead to a call-up from Capello.
Pearce reportedly axed Carroll from the Romania matches after being unhappy about the nature of his withdrawal from September's Under-21 Championship qualifiers against Portugal and Lithuania.
As well as taking the Barclays Premier League by storm since Newcastle's promotion - scoring seven goals in 12 appearances - Carroll has made headlines off the field for all the wrong reasons this season.
But this does not look like putting off Capello, who is desperate to find a top-class foil for Wayne Rooney.
Jack Wilshere also looks set to keep his place in the senior squad after being left out by Pearce, who today handed three players their maiden under-21 call-ups for Tuesday's game in Wiesbaden.
Chelsea midfielder Josh McEachran, 17, Swansea striker Scott Sinclair, 21, and Manchester City defender Ben Mee, 21, were named in what was a small 20-man squad.
Everton midfielder Jack Rodwell was also back in the fold after recovering from the ankle injury which has sidelined him since August.
England Under-21 squad for friendly against Germany in Wiesbaden (kick-off 1700GMT):
Frank Fielding (Blackburn), Jason Steele (Middlesbrough); Ryan Bertrand (Chelsea), Martin Kelly (Liverpool), Michael Mancienne (Chelsea), Micah Richards (Man City), Chris Smalling (Man Utd), Kyle Walker (Tottenham), Ben Mee (Man City); Marc Albrighton (Aston Villa), Tom Cleverley (Man Utd), Jack Cork (Chelsea), Henri Lansbury (Arsenal), Josh McEachran (Chelsea), Fabrice Muamba (Bolton), Jack Rodwell (Everton), Danny Rose (Tottenham); Nathan Delfouneso (Aston Villa), Scott Sinclair (Swansea), Danny Welbeck (Man Utd).Reuse content