On Wednesday afternoon, West Ham United youngster Declan Rice finally made his decision regarding his international future, pledging allegiance to England over Ireland.
Rice, 20, has already earned three caps for the Boys in Green, all of which came in friendlies under previous manager Martin O’Neill, meaning he was still eligible to switch to the country of his birth before playing a competitive game.
His impressive performances have lead to interest from the FA about him coming to play for the Three Lions, with Gareth Southgate a keen admirer of Rice and has been to watch him play this season.
After hearing of England’s interest, a decision was then there to be made and the player took his time before eventually making his selection. Rice’s call hasn’t been received too well by those in Ireland, particularly from former internationals who have reacted pretty angrily to his decision to commit to England despite already playing for Ireland, namely Kevin Kilbane.
"If you’re a 'proud Englishman' then why play for us in the first place?," Kilbane said on Wednesday night.
"I can't understand his decision to play for us in the first place."The line that stands out for me is, 'I'm a proud Englishman' if you're a proud Englishman, don't come and play for us.
"It's been dragged on now for five-six months since he decided against taking the call-up for the Nations League. It was done then. I wouldn't have taken the decision to call him up again. He'd had his head turned. It was done."