Declan Rice: Fifa confirms West Ham midfielder's switch to England from Republic of Ireland

Declan Rice
Declan Rice played for the Republic of Ireland from U16 level

Declan Rice is free to start his England career after Fifa confirmed his switch from the Republic of Ireland.

The 20-year-old West Ham midfielder, who was born in London with Irish grandparents, has played three times for the Republic.

Because they were friendlies it left the door open to change allegiance.

"Fifa can now confirm that the change of association of Declan Rice from Republic of Ireland to England has been approved," said a spokesman.

Rice, who considers himself "to be of mixed nationality", pledged his international future to England last month.

After representing Ireland at youth level, Rice went on to make three senior appearances last year, including games against France and the United States before the World Cup.

However, speculation over his long-term international future mounted after he became a West Ham regular under Manuel Pellegrini this season.

In completing the switch, Rice follows in the footsteps of Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish, who made the same move to England in 2016.

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