John Giles gives his take on t...

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John Giles gives his take on the Declan Rice debate

98FM
98FM

08:52 30 Aug 2018


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Since Martin O'Neill broke the news on Monday that West Ham midfielder Declan Rice is considering whether he should continue as an Ireland international or make the switch to his birth nation England, it's been a point of debate. 

Tonight, Ireland and Leeds United legend John Giles shared his view as he joined us on Off The Ball as always on a Thursday. 

"It's a very difficult one. I'm very disappointed that we're in the position that we're in because he is a very, very good player and he's probably the best player that's come along in recent times as one of the young players," he said.

Listen back to the full chat with John Giles tonight on the podcast player or watch on YouTube above:

John Giles gives his take on the Declan Rice debate

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

"I feel very, very disappointed that we're in the position now that he's played three times for Ireland and maybe qualify for England now.

"The West Ham owners are maybe influential in this because I think as far as they're concerned, if he plays for England, he's a much more important and valuable player for them.

"I'm disappointed in it but I can understand the lad's point of view too. He's a 19-year-old, he's very, very young and he might consider - and certainly West Ham might consider that it's more beneficial to them and to him that if he plays for England instead of Ireland.

"But I'm very disappointed that having played three games for Ireland that he's not now going to qualify for us."

Citing the fact that Rice has a relatively new agent, John added that agents' main interest is maximising the commercial value of their clients.

"I think there's no doubt that if he played for England, particularly after the World Cup when England did well, that commercially, it would be more valuable to them if he played for England rather than Ireland," said the Dubliner.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


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