Jack Grealish confirms decision to play for England over Ireland
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Jack Grealish confirms decision to play for England over Ireland

JACK Grealish has confirmed his decision to represent England instead of Republic of Ireland at senior international level.

Birmingham-born Grealish represented Ireland from Under 17s through to Under 21s, but has impressed progressively for his club Aston Villa over the past 12 months.

That has made England manager Roy Hodgson sit up and take notice, and the lure of playing for the country of his birth has eventually proved too hard for the 20-year-old to resist.

"It was not an easy decision as Ireland has a special place with me through my family," he said. "But I have decided to represent the country of my birth."

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Grealish qualifies to play for Ireland through his grandparents, but if Hodgson picks and plays the midfielder in a competitive game for England, he will no longer be available for selection by Republic boss Martin O’Neill.

England’s next competitive games are on October 9 and October 12 against Estonia and Lithuania respectively.