Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain almost played rugby

Oxlade-Chamberlain almost chose rugby
© PA Photos
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain admits that he almost played rugby for London Irish.

Arsenal star Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has admitted that he came close to playing rugby for London Irish.

The former Southampton star, who joined the Gunners for £15m this summer, scored a hat-trick for England's Under-21s against Iceland earlier in the week.

However, the 18-year-old has revealed that he once could have potentially represented England in a different sport altogether.

"My senior school didn't play football," he said. "It was a rugby and cricket school and as I was on a sports scholarship I was forced to play rugby.

"I played scrum-half or full-back and I was alright at it.

"I got a trial for London Irish but couldn't do it because Southampton wouldn't let me."

England coach Fabio Capello has shown interest in the Gunners youngster and has suggested that he could receive a call-up to the senior side ahead of Euro 2012.

Wojciech Szczesny
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