Declan Rice transfers international allegiance to England


West Ham midfielder Declan Rice has declared his international allegiance as English despite playing three friendlies for the Republic of Ireland.

The 20-year-old was born in London but played against Turkey, France and USA last year for the ROI. He was eligible to play for the Greens due to his dual citizenship which came from his grandparents who were born in Cork. Rice has featured for Ireland at various levels since making his international debut at under-16 level.

Back in August last year, Martin O’Neill tried to call Rice up to the team for their UEFA Nations League matches but the midfielder turned them down saying he was undecided about his international future. Featuring in any qualification stages would have meant he would be tied to the Republic of Ireland.

Since August both countries have been sweating over who the Premier League player would pick before he called both Mick McCarthy and Gareth Southgate to confirm he would like to be part of England’s squad for their Euro 2020 qualifiers.

McCarthy took to the media today to announce the decision:

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

A long statement posted on the player’s Twitter page read:

The midfielder could be part of Southgate’s plans for when qualification for the European Championships begins next month, starting with fixtures against Czech Republic and Montenegro.

FIFA rules state that players feature for more than one nation as friendly matches are not counted as full international games.

Irish fans have clearly felt stung by the decision with pundits like Kevin Kilbane, who played 110 times for the Republic of Ireland, tweeting:

Rice is the second player to snub the Republic of Ireland within the last five years after Jack Grealish also turned the nation down to feature for England, although the Aston Villa midfielder is yet to receive a call-up to Southgate’s squad.


About Author

News writer for Prost International, I get out to games but mainly cover EFL and women's football. Found here:

Comments are closed.