Declan Rice has issued an apology after an old social media post re surfaced in which a phase associated with the IRA was used.
Rice, now a former Republic of Ireland international, switched allegiance to England last month. The West Ham midfielder was called up to Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the Euro 2020 qualifiers with Czech Republic and Montengro. However, the post which happened over 4 years year came to prominence which forced Rice to issue an apology.
In 2015 Rice posted as an U17 Ireland International “UP THE RA” in response to a teammate expressing that England and Ireland would meet at the age grade in an international match. RTE Sport report that it wasn’t the first time the response was used on the thread of messages. An apology was issued by Rice on Thursday afternoon on his Instagram page, in which he described the comment as poorly expressed and he insisted he didnt mean the words in a political manner but rather an attempt to show support to teammates.
The statement read:
I am aware that a poorly-expressed comment I made when I was a junior player has been circulated on social media. “I recognise now that my attempt to show support for my team-mates at the time could be negatively interpreted. “While my naive words were not meant to be a political opinion and do not represent who I am, I sincerely apologise for any offence caused.
It remains to be seen whether these comments will impact on his place in the England squad or not. Commenting on been called up to the squad he said “You can’t describe it, to be honest, just a straight smile, “You can’t believe, it’s everything you’ve wanted to work for since a kid and it’s come true so the call-up is probably one of the best feelings you are going to feel.