Rice decides on his international future
West Ham’s Declan Rice has chosen to represent England despite starting his international career with the Republic of Ireland.
Rice’s future has been a hot topic among Republic of Ireland fans for a while now.
The youngster looks destined for a great future in football after breaking on the scene with West Ham.
Rice has been impressive under Manuel Pellegrini this season but has had a big decision to make.
Despite playing for the Republic of Ireland in three friendly games against Turkey, France and the USA, Rice was eligible to switch allegiance to the England national team.
After talks with both sides over the past few months, Rice has now decided which side to represent.
“I am a proud Englishman”
The West Ham starlet has announced on social media that he’s chosen to represent England.
In a lengthy statement, Rice explained that he’s ‘a proud Englishman’ and that his decision was made ‘with my heart and my head, based on what I believe is best for my future.’
“I have equal respect and love for both England and Ireland and therefore the national team I choose to represent is not a clear-cut, simple selection,” he explained in his post on social media.
“Particularly not for a young lad who never dreamed of being in this position.
“Like so many people around the world, I consider myself to be of mixed nationality.
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“I am a proud Englishman, having been born and raised in London.
“However, I am just as proud of my family’s Irish heritage and my affinity and connection with the country.
“Ultimately it is a personal decision that I have made with my heart and my head, based on what I believe is best for my future.
“I fully accept that some Irish supporters will be disappointed … My pride at wearing the Irish shirt was always 100% genuine.”