By 90Min
October 04, 2018

West Ham defender Declan Rice is preparing to file the necessary paperwork with FIFA in an attempt to switch his national team allegiance to play for Gareth Southgate's England, according to reports.

There has been much speculation about where the 19-year-old's future lies on the international stage despite representing the Republic of Ireland in a number of friendlies, playing for the Boys in Green as recently as June 2018.


But Rice has since had a change of heart, according to Sky Sports, and the defender now wants to fight his way into the England team ahead of the next major international tournament.

It is claimed that Rice will speak with FIFA about amending his international registration so that he can line up for the Three Lions, following talks with England manager Southgate, who is a keen admirer of the versatile Londoner.

The former Chelsea youth player has been rising through the ranks at West Ham for the last five years and he initially broke into their first team as a defender.

This season, however, Rice has been deployed in midfield under Manuel Pellegrini. 

The teenager has proved to be the difference maker in recent weeks, and it was his tireless work in the middle which helped West Ham secure their first win of the season against Everton last month.

Rice will still have to wait sometime before he is available to Southgate even if his application proves to be successful, but he will take confidence in a senior call-up after seeing England's most recent squad.

Stu Forster/GettyImages

Chelsea playmaker Mason Mount, Leicester City's James Maddison and even Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sacho have all been called up for England's upcoming UEFA Nations League fixtures against Croatia and Spain.

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