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Will Ireland brave VIP style awards?

It's the fashion showdown that always gets tongues wagging.

But this year, all talk has turned to whether controversial soccer star Stephen Ireland will be turning up to the Peter Mark VIP Style Awards with partner Jessica Lawlor in two weeks time.

After saying that he would "rather shoot himself" than live in Cork, he could be forgiven for giving his native country a wide berth for a while.

Ireland (24) has since claimed his quote was taken out of context.

His glam partner Jessica (25) has confirmed that she'll be there, given that she's up for an accolade in the Best Newcomer category at the March 25 bash at the Shelbourne Hotel.

She said that she "hopes" her other half will be able to be her date, but that it all depends on his footballing schedule.

The midfielder, who has been plagued with a hamstring injury all season long, picked up a thigh injury in training which could keep him out for a further two weeks -- meaning he could be free.

"Let's face it -- everyone was outraged with his comments and they were very uncalled for, especially what he said about the economic crisis in Ireland and how we're only reaping what was sown," said a source.

Regarding his comments about Cork, Ireland said; "I love Cork, I have Cork tattooed on my body."