Aston Villa defender Matty Cash to play for Poland after gaining citizenship

The Aston Villa defender Matty Cash could make his international debut for Poland as soon as next month after being granted citizenship.

The president of the Polish FA, Cezary Kulesza, confirmed that the 24-year-old had been given citizenship on Tuesday afternoon. The country’s president, Andrzej Duda, also tweeted his support to the player, writing: “congratulations and good luck on the pitch!”

“Thank you, Mr. President. It is an honour and an extremely important moment for me and my family. I’ll do my best on the pitch,” Cash replied. The full-back’s mother was born in Poland, and Cash has spent some time exploring the possibility of changing his national allegiance, having not been selected by England.

“This is a very important and proud day for me and my family. My application to get a Polish citizenship has been approved by Polish authorities,” Cash added in a separate tweet. “I would like to thank the president, my family and other people who helped me. Now it’s time for a new challenge. I will give my all for this country.”

Cash could feature in Poland’s final two World Cup qualifiers in November. Paola Sousa’s side face Andorra away on 12 November before a home fixture against Hungary three days later. Poland are second in Group I, three points behind England.

The Poland head coach Sousa, has said there was a “lot of enthusiasm” about playing for the national side in Cash’s family. “Playing in the national team is not only a great responsibility, but also something additional, which is very difficult to describe in words,” the Portuguese added.

Cash told the Birmingham Mail on Tuesday that he has had conversations with Sousa about his role in the side, who are usually set up in 3-5-2 with wing-backs. “[We] went through some things about the ambition and success we’re trying to build,” the 24-year-old said. “We had a conversation. There’s a plan in place.”

Cash signed a five-year contract at Villa Park in September 2020, joining from Nottingham Forest in a deal worth up to £16m. He has played 10 games in all competitions for Villa this season, scoring his first goal for the club in the 3-0 Premier League win over Everton in September.