O’Neill ready to wait on Grealish

Martin O’Neill will wait from word from Jack Grealish as to whether the Aston Villa winger wants to make his full Ireland debut against USA on Nov 18.

The Ireland manager has yet to receive contact from the Grealish camp since meeting with the player and his father, Kevin, back in August when he chose to park his international future amid interest from his homeland of England. Reports the 19-year-old will make himself available for the upcoming friendly, a fixture that wouldn’t tie him to Ireland permanently, have been confirmed by his father.

Speaking yesterday, O’Neill insisted he would welcome the teen, who only recently finalised his club future by agreeing a long-term contract at Villa.

He said: “I spoke with his father and asked if Jack wanted to come in and be involved in the Oman game (last month) but he said that he preferred to concentrate on Ireland’s Under-21s at that stage.

“From the bits I have seen of him, he has a lot of talent. He looks to have got a lot stronger too when I saw him playing on loan last season for Notts County. I can understand it (the hype) when some new kid in town comes, particularly someone who has an eligibility to play for Ireland. Sometimes people can get carried away with things.

“Of course I would like to have more conversations with Jack and his father but not to go there and force someone into a decision that they may not fancy down the line. I’m not going to force it.”


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