Fabio Capello has told David Beckham to forget about the World Cup if he does not return to Europe at the end of the year.
Beckham is currently playing in America for LA Galaxy but the MLS season finishes in November.
That could leave him out in the cold for months until the new campaign starts in March.
The midfielder spent a spell on loan at AC Milan earlier this year and he may return there again.
Tottenham, Manchester City and Chelsea have also been touted as possible destinations.
England boss Capello said: ‘Beckham knows well that if he doesn’t return to a big European championship in December he’ll have no chance for the World Cup.’
Beckham, 33, is house hunting in London – Chelsea in fact – which fuels speculation that he will end up at Stamford Bridge.