Tuesday 27 September 2016

Jack Grealish timeline: How the saga unfolded over the past 25 months

Published 28/09/2015 | 15:24

Jack Grealish
Jack Grealish

Jackl Grealish has ended the saga over his international allegiance by committing to England. Here is how the controversy unfolded.

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August 2013 - After rejecting advances from England, Grealish makes his debut for Noel King's Ireland under-21s.

March 2014 - Grealish says: "If I'm enjoying it with Ireland and I won't be pressured into playing for England.

"The English FA met dad and I before this campaign started and told me where I'd be playing for them (their under 19s). We had already spoken to Noel (King) by that stage and thought, as I'd be with the under 21s, Ireland was the best place for me."

June 2014 - Paul Doolin doesn't include Jack Grealish in his under-19 squad for their failed European Championship campaign.

July 2014 - Paul Lambert heaps praise on Grealish after he scores in a pre-season defeat to Chesterfield.

August 2014 - Martin O'Neill confirms that Jack Grealish has asked for time to consider his international future.

"I spoke to his father, I spoke to Jack and he's a young kid coming through with a lot of potential and I think they just want to take a little bit of time.

"He's felt comfortable playing underage level but it's a totally different thing committing at senior level.

"It was a decent conversation and I think I'll just leave it at that at the moment."

September 2014 - Grealish's team mate Shay Given:  "He's a big talent. He came on yesterday against Hull and he was fantastic. We all hope he comes and plays for Ireland."

September 2014 - Grealish shines in the Ireland under-21s defeat to Germany in Halle.

September 2014 - Grealish reveals details of chat with Martin O'Neill

My contract at Villa runs out at the end of the season, so my concentration is on playing for the club and getting the negotiations on a new deal sorted out.

"Martin O'Neill appreciates from my meeting with him that I need to put my club future first before thinking about the international situation.

"My father and I wouldn't have liked to go to that meeting and hear Martin say, 'Come on and play for Ireland'. In fairness, he didn't put me under pressure to make a decision.

"He sat me down, treated me like a man and talked through everything.

"It wasn't just about football but growing up as a footballer and where my grandparents are from in Ireland.

"That's what I wanted to hear from Martin because it is a big decision to make and one I want to take my time over."

September 2014 - Grelaish claims Stephen Quinn called him a 'fake Paddy' during a game with Hull.

October 2014 - Jack Grealish withdraws from Ireland under-21 squad for Norway friendly and Noel King "accepts" his reasons.

October 2014 - Grealish signs a new four-year deal with Aston Villa.

October 2014 - Grealish takes to Twitter to distance himself from reports that he was leaning towards declaring for Ireland and was making himself available for a friendly with the USA.

January 2015 - Grealish warned off Twitter by Paul Lambert for tweeting "can't wait to be happy playing football again" after dropping out of the first-team picture at Villa Park and fined £5,000.

February 2015 - Tim Sherwood takes over as Aston Villa boss and heaps praise on Grealish.

March 2015 - Grealish sees red during feisty FA Cup encounter with West Brom.

March 2015 - Jack Grealish after winning the U-21 Player of the Year award for 2014: "It's a big decision to pick what country I'm going to play for and it's a bit of an honour to have that decision. At the moment I'm concentrating on my club football but hopefully in September time I'll be back playing for Ireland."

April 2015 - Grealish plays a starring role as Aston Villa beat Liverpool 2-1 to qualify for the FA Cup final.

April 2015 - Reports across the water say that the English FA want to offer Grealish a place in the summer's U-20 tournament in Toulon.

April 2015 - Tim Sherwood tells Grealish to 'go with his heart'.

April 2015 - Grealish caught using legal high 'hippy crack'

May 2015 - Grealish declined an invitation from Martin O'Neill to be in the squad for the friendly against England at the Aviva.

May 2015 - Roy Hodgson confirms that Jack Grealish has been on England's radar for a long time.

May 2015 - Aston Villa are blown away in the FA Cup final by Arsenal.

June 2015 - Roy Keane admits to being frustrated at the saga and Grealish's decision to refuse call-up.

"I think the frustrating part is that if Jack came here he'd have loved it, playing with Ireland and the senior squad and getting involved."

June 2015 - Roy Hodgson claims Grealish initiated contact with they FA.

June 2015 - Jack Grealish is pictured passed out on the ground during his holidays in Tenerife.

August 2015 - Martin O'Neill claims he spoke to Grealish and a decision was imminent.

September 2015 - Hodgson put the pressure on Grealish.

"I would like him to come out and say, 'I've thought about it, I've got the two possibilities and I'm opting for England' and then he will be available for selection."

September 2015 - Martin O'Neill congratulates Hodgson for putting the squeeze on Grealish.

September 2015 - Jack Grealish's agent Jonathan Barnett: 'Gareth Bale missed out on millions by not choosing England'

September 2015 - Grealish's dad denies that son has made a decision after reports in the British press that he was about to choose England.

September 2015 - Aston Villa confirm on their official Twitter that he has chosen to play for England.

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