English Premiership

Grealish undecided - O'Neill

2015-05-13 08:10
Jack Grealish (AFP)

Dublin - Aston Villa teenager Jack Grealish has yet to decide whether to represent Ireland or England, according to Irish manager Martin O'Neill.

Grealish, who has burst on to the scene this season and has played a key role in Villa's run to the FA Cup final, was born in England but has played at under-age level for Ireland, the country he qualifies for through his grandparents.

O'Neill said on Tuesday that he had consulted the player and his father about including the 19-year-old midfielder in his squad for next month's friendly at home to England and Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland.

"I spoke to the two of them and Jack's father and Jack were not in any particular hurry at that point in time to make their mind up," the former Villa manager told a news conference.

"I left it entirely up to them."

Grealish's dilemma has dominated the sports pages in Ireland where the national team have qualified for just one major soccer championship since 2002.

Irish bookmaker Paddy Power slashed its prices on him representing England after O'Neill's comments, offering odds of 1-3 that he will play for Roy Hodgson's men and 2-1 that he picks Ireland.

Ireland, who are two points behind Germany and Scotland and three adrift of leaders Poland in their Euro 2016 qualifying group, will trim their 33-man squad ahead of the games on June 7 and June 13.

Irealand Squad:

David Forde, Shay Given, Keiren Westwood, Darren Randolph, Richard Keogh, Marc Wilson, Seamus Coleman, Cyrus Christie, John O'Shea, Alex Pearce, Paul McShane, James McCarthy, Jeff Hendrick, Stephen Ward, Harry Arter, Glenn Whelan, Aiden McGeady, James McClean, Alan Judge, Robbie Brady, Anthony Pilkington, Stephen Quinn, David Meyler, Wes Hoolahan, Robbie Keane, Shane Long, Daryl Murphy, Jon Walters, Kevin Doyle, Anthony Stokes, David McGoldrick, Adam Rooney, Simon Cox.


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