Declan Rice claims that he has yet to make up his mind on his international and that it’s ‘one of the hardest decisions’ he will make in his career.

Rice, born in England, has been capped at underage and senior level for Ireland, but those three senior caps came in international friendlies, meaning he is still free to change his allegiance.

England manager Gareth Southgate has been working to try and convince the West Ham midfielder to make the switch while Ireland boss Martin O’Neill is eager to give the 19-year-old the time and space to make a decision.

A report two weeks ago in the Daily Star claimed that Rice had come to a decision and had opted to play for England but the midfielder insists that he has not decided and it still struggling with his choice.

Speaking to The Times, Rice said: "Without doubt it is not an easy decision.

"It's one of the hardest decisions I will have to make in my career. Martin (O'Neill) was excellent when he came to my house and Gareth (Southgate) was excellent with me and they both understand the position I am in.

"I said I just need some time as if I am going to be playing for the rest of my career I need to make the right decision, what is best for me and my family.

"They were both great to be fair. I told both managers that I am just focusing on playing for West Ham at the moment as that was on the back of a good season.

"Being 19 and playing as many games as I have, I never thought I would be in a position to make such a hard decision."

Meanwhile Rice has a similar decision to make at club level.

The midfielder is still on a youth team contract and negotiations between a new long term deal with West Ham have been on-going for some time, but Rice is confident that the end is in sight and he is adamant that he wants to stick with the Irons.

"I want to sign for West Ham and I think it is going to happen," he said. "Playing every week is what is best for me at the moment and hopefully the contract can come soon."