England fans accuse Leon Bailey of 'trolling' them before World Cup squad announcement
Was Leon Bailey *really* 'trolling' England fans shortly before the announcement of their World Cup squad? No. Almost certainly not.
But with Gareth Southgate's 23-man squad imminent on Wednesday, plenty seemed to read far too deeply into a post left by the Bayer Leverkusen forward on his social media channels.
'Humble Lion', his post read, accompanied by a picture of him on a beach, staring out to sea. Although the mention of the word 'tattoo' in the hashtag makes clear that he's referring to the image of a lion which can be seen inked onto his right arm, some interpreted it as being a sign that a completely unexpected call-up for England was set to be announced.
— Leon Bailey ✞ (@leonbailey) May 16, 2018
Needless to say, it wasn't - prompting some to suggest the 20-year-old had been trolling England supporters.
Leon Bailey trolling England fans on Instagram sksksk
— Jack S. (@Khxritonov) May 16, 2018
Leon Bailey playing games with England fans. 🦁 pic.twitter.com/jlca5zZjCn
— Ruaridh MacIver (@RuaridhMacIver4) May 16, 2018
Bailey, who moved to Leverkusen from Genk last year, was born in the Jamaican capital of Kingston. Having never made a senior appearance for the country of his birth, it was reported earlier in the year that Southgate was investigating the possibility of calling him up for England.
This seemed to stem from the fact that Bailey's has English grandparents who hold British passports. However, as pointed out by Goal earlier this year, reports in Jamaica claim that his grandparents were not born in England, therefore making him ineligible to play for the Three Lions according to Fifa rules.
As well as his 23-man squad, Southgate also named a standby list featuring five other names. As was reported on Tuesday, Jack Wilshere and Joe Hart both missed out altogether, though there was a call-up for Danny Welbeck. Despite scoring just five goals in 28 appearances for Arsenal this season, the former Manchester United striker was named in the squad - perhaps one of the more divisive selections in the squad.