Published: Sat, March 16, 2019
Sport | By

Rice called up by England, a day after getting Ireland award

Rice called up by England, a day after getting Ireland award

In a statement in February, Rice said he considered himself "mixed nationality" and that making the decision was "not a clear-cut, simple selection".

Southgate said that he had warned Rice from when he first started talking to him, before the World Cup, that he would face public hostility if he chose to switch allegiance.

It comes after the defensive midfielder, who can also play in defence, switched worldwide allegiance from the Republic of Ireland.

Manchester United forward Jesse Lingard also misses out on the England squad after picking up a hamstring injury during his side's recent Premier League clash against Liverpool. "I think they are really big decisions when you are asking a player to transfers associations".

Southgate picked him as one of three keepers alongside Stoke City's Jack Butland and Tom Heaton, who returns to the squad following a lengthy absence.

When he was crowned Young Player of the Year at the London Football Awards, she wrote on social media: "Couldn't be more proud of my Dec winning young player of the year".

Preston-born former Ireland worldwide Kevin Kilbane has been outspoken about Rice's switch and said it "makes a mockery" of global football.

"There were never any guarantees made to him, but his form has been excellent".

"As I said last month, I had an extremely difficult decision to make regarding my global future, but I have made that decision and now I just want to focus on the future, continuing to work hard and play as well as I possibly can".

England host Czech Republic on March 22 before taking on Montenegro in Podgorica three days later.

Southgate pointed to an article Eni Aluko wrote in "The Guardian" last month, in which the former England global wrote that there "needs to be a much more mature attitude in football towards players who have dual nationality".

"What we've seen throughout has been an impressive character, a young man that shows tremendous leadership and responsibility".

"What I like in our squad, is there are a lot of players who want to be among the best in the world".

"But, we're pleased with what Jordan's done and we've got to help him through what was hopefully a blip at the weekend". "If we can provide hope and optimism through our performances then that's part of our responsibility as a team".

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