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Gareth Southgate set to bring Declan Rice straight into England squad after Ireland snub

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Gareth Southgate is set to bring Declan Rice straight into his Three Lions set-up after the West Ham midfielder switched his allegiance from the Republic of Ireland to England.

The 20-year-old spoke to Ireland boss Mick McCarthy and England manager Southgate on Wednesday to inform them of his decision.

Rice, who has won three senior Ireland caps - all in friendlies, which allows him to change his mind - qualifies for the Republic through his grandparents but was born in England to English parents.

'I have equal respect and love for both England and Ireland and therefore the national team I choose to represent is not a clear-cut, simple selection.

Southgate will give serious consideration to drafting Rice into his squad for next month's Euro 2020 qualifiers against Czech Republic and Montenegro provided his registration is finalised.

Rice has been offered no assurances of a place in the senior set-up by Southgate but the manager and his No 2 Steve Holland have been hugely impressed with his performances for West Ham and already view the midfielder as good enough for full honours.

The England manager believes Rice can become the anchor in the national side's midfield for the next decade.

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