England football players could reportedly go on strike over payment issues while representating their country claims a report. The Football Association (FA) bosses are concerned that the issue of future commercial rights could divide the squad just as they look to becoming a united one under Gareth Southgate.
The dispute relates to the fact that the England players want to take control of their sponsorship activities while on international duty rather than remain with 1966 Entertainment which usually negotiates on their behalf.
It is understood that the players and their agents are unhappy with the current situation as their income from such deals has dropped down to £150,000-a-year per player, with some even complaining that their voices are not being heard and that they could earn a fraction of what the big name stars like Harry Kane would receive in the future.
"If this isn't played carefully we could have a Denmark situation on our hands. It could halt all the momentum the England team has built up," a football source told the Dailystar.
The FA chiefs are reportedly concerned that such a situation could result in something experienced by Denmark, with the players going on a strike during their scheduled match against Slovakia last month which meant that they had to field a third-string side who eventually went on to lose 3-0.
The issue has been reportedly discussed by the players, their legal teams and the FA ahead of their international friendly against Croatia.
"It is getting a few backs up but we've not got to the stage of downing tools – or rather boots. The real worry is if it creates ill feeling in the team just at a time when England are doing rather well. That would be a disaster," the source concluded.