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Dublin: 1°C Friday 7 May 2021

Ireland or England? Jack Grealish is considering options, says Martin O'Neill

The young Aston Villa playmaker can still switch to the country of his birth.

Jack Grealish has impressed at U21 level for Ireland.
Jack Grealish has impressed at U21 level for Ireland.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

ASTON VILLA’S RISING star Jack Grealish will take some time to weigh up his options before deciding whether to declare for Ireland or England.

The young midfielder was not included this morning as Martin O’Neill named a 36-man squad for the friendly against Oman and the opening Euro 2016 qualifier against Georgia.

Birmingham-born Grealish, who is rated is one of Villa’s hottest prospects, has represented Ireland at underage level and was only 17 when he won his first U21 cap last summer.

With England equally anxious to secure his services there was talk of a call-up to O’Neill’s senior squad ahead of next month’s matches, but the teen and his father indicated that he did not wish to be considered this time around.

“I spoke to his father, I spoke to Jack,” O’Neill explained. ”He’s a young kid coming through and he’s got a lot of potential — I’ve said this before. I think they just want to take a little bit of time.

“Of course he’s got a number of options. He has felt comfortable playing underage football but the underage football is a completely different thing to committing yourself to senior football.

“He has got a lot of talent. He’s gotten taller and he’s gotten much stronger in the last couple of months. It was a decent conversation. I think I’ll just leave it at that at the moment.”

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Niall Kelly

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