Declan Rice ready to pick England over Republic of Ireland 6 months ago

Declan Rice ready to pick England over Republic of Ireland

Gareth Southgate has reportedly won the battle for Declan Rice's international allegiance.

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill had previously suggested that Rice had yet to make up his mind regarding his preferred national team but a decision has seemingly been reached this week.

The Daily Star report that the versatile West Ham man has been convinced to declare for England after extended talks with Southgate in recent weeks.

The report claims that Rice was massively impressed with a recent visit to St George’s Park, where he was presented with statistics and a plan for how he would slot into Southgate's plans moving forward.

London-born Rice has represented Ireland at underage level and even featured a few times for O'Neill's side but because the senior games were all friendlies, the 19-year-old is allowed to switch to another national set-up if he so pleases.

O'Neill continued to hold out hope that Rice, who can play in midfield and defence, would eventually commit his future to the Republic and took umbrage with a Sky Sports report earlier this month which claimed Rice had already decided on England.

Rice has taken his time in making his choice but like Jack Grealish before him, the highly touted teenager seemingly wants to represent the Three Lions instead of the Boys in Green.