Scott Hogan outlined his Irish heritage after he joined up with Martin O'Neill's squad for the first time ahead of our crucial World Cup qualifiers with Moldova and Wales.
The Salford-born player qualifies for Ireland through his grandparents on his father's side of the family
After obtaining an Irish passport, the 24-year-old Aston Villa striker now finds himself preparing for two crucial qualifiers that will decide whether or not the Republic of Ireland are heading to Russia next summer.
"I've grown up with my mum's side that is English and my dad's side is Irish. I've got all the elements of an Irish family and all the traditions as my grandma made sure," he said.
"I've long forgotten a lot of them to be honest. There is a big family back in Carlow.
"It wasn't a difficult decision. Injuries delayed my arrival but I've always wanted to be here."
Hogan joined Villa from Brentford for £15m last January and although he hasn't scored in the Championship this season, he does have three Carabao Cup goals to his name.
The managers of Wales and the Republic of Ireland will have taken more than a passing glance at Real Madrid's home clash with Espanyol in the Bernabeu last night. Gareth Bale is the difference between Wales or Ireland challenging the FIFA mathematicians and taking one of their eight play-off places.
It might take years before we see a significant improvement in the senior team with young naturally-gifted footballers in every position, but the changes to improve underage football development in Ireland are a move in the right direction.