Rice yet to decide on his international future
Declan Rice has said choosing between the Republic of Ireland and England is “one of the hardest decisions I will have to make in my career.”
Speaking to the Times (UK) the West Ham United midfielder has confirmed he is yet to decide on his international future, despite recent reports claiming he had committed to Gareth Southgate’s England.
Nineteen-year-old Rice has met with both Southgate and Ireland manager Martin O’Neill, but has asked for more time before making his mind up.
He said: “Without a doubt, it is not an easy decision. It is one of the hardest I will have to make in my career.
“Martin [O’Neill] was excellent when he came to my house and Gareth was excellent and they both understand the position I am in. I said I just need some time.
“I need to make the right decision, what is best for me and my family. Being 19, I never thought I would be in a position to make such a hard decision.”
Earlier this week O’Neill said the idea he should have capped Rice in a competitive fixture in order to tie him to the Republic of Ireland was “kind of crazy.”
Rice – now a fixture in the West Ham United side after making his breakthrough under former mananer David Moyes last season – has played for the Republic of Ireland in three friendly fixtures but not in a competitive match.