West Ham legend Mark Noble will finally make an appearance for England this weekend in the biggest charity football match in the World. This Sunday at the London Stadium, Noble, who retired at the end of last season, will play in the 2022 Soccer Aid for UNICEF match.
Noble will be reunited with former West Ham teammates including Teddy Sheringham, Stuart Downing, David James, Patrice Evra, Robbie Keane and Joe Cole who are all set to feature in the game.
Speaking to West Ham’s official website Noble said:
“I was touched when Soccer Aid for UNICEF invited me to play for England. Playing for your country is the greatest honour for any professional athlete – and Sunday 12 June will be no different for me, or for my kids who are big Soccer Aid fans!
“Add to that the fact this is for such a special cause and I can’t wait to run out in front of 60,000 fans at London Stadium one last time. It will be an emotional day, for sure – but I want you all to share it with me.”
Many former West Ham players have featured in Soccer Aid over the years. Jermaine Defoe, Glen Johnson and Paolo Di Canio to name a few, have all played. Former Hammers managers Harry Redknapp and Sam Allardyce have both been in the dugout for the charity game. West Ham fan and TV presenter Ben Shephard was infamously sent off in the match in 2016 for a second yellow he got for a foul on former Spurs player Edgar Davids!
Shootin’ boots 🔛⚽️
Training is underway… pic.twitter.com/RfBHg7nwW2
— Soccer Aid (@socceraid) June 9, 2022
Noble was never capped at senior-level for England despite numerous calls for his name to be included. In the 2015/16 season, he was particularly expected to be included in an England squad as he starred for West Ham. However, never received a call-up to Roy Hodgson’s team at the time.
The West Ham legend did make 20 appearances for the England U21 side, scoring 3 goals. He was eligible to play for the Republic of Ireland but turned down a call-up.
In an interview with talkSPORT, Noble explained why: “I didn’t dream of playing for them. The thought of being chosen over an Irish player who had dreamed of playing for Ireland… that didn’t sit right with me.”
He may not have played for England during his professional career but he will be a great presence in Soccer Aid this year. What a send-off it will be for him at the London Stadium this weekend in a match that is for such a great cause.
The game between England and the Soccer Aid World XI kicks off on Sunday at 7:30.