West Ham’s Rice chooses to play for England over Ireland

(Image: Twitter/@_DeclanRice)

West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice has announced on Wednesday his intention to continue his international career with England, after having previously played for Ireland.

Rice, 20, was capped three times by Ireland, but all of his appearances were in friendlies, which allows him to swap his international allegiance to the country of his birth.

Rice, who has made 59 appearances for West Ham, has excelled this season at London Stadium and has attracted England boss Gareth Southgate’s attention.

“This has been an extremely difficult decision and, in all honesty, not one I ever expected to be making at this stage of my career,” Rice said in a statement.

“In recent weeks and months, I have discussed the situation with the people who mean the most to me. My parents, my family, my girlfriend and my closest friends.

“I have also spoken to Martin O’Neill, Mick McCarthy, Gareth Southgate and to friends and colleagues within the game whose opinion I respect. I am truly grateful for the support I have received leading to this decision.”

The news comes a setback for McCarthy, who returned for his second spell as Ireland manager after the departure of O’Neill in November.

“Declan rang me today and said he has decided to give it a go with England. Good luck to him,” McCarthy said.

REUTERS/Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar

< PREVIOUS ARTICLE
Man United charged by UEFA over bottle thrown at Di Maria
NEXT ARTICLE >
Newport relishing chance to take on Guardiola's City stars
RELATED POSTS
PSG sign Everton’s Gueye on four-year contract
New York City FC reap rewards of shared Manchester City vision
Bournemouth sign midfielder Billing from Huddersfield
Solskjaer’s son in Kristiansund squad for Man United friendly
Former Man United defender Evra announces retirement
Liverpool sign 16-year-old Elliott from Fulham

Leave a Reply