Aviva Stadium

Next Game

Rep Ireland v Gibraltar

Saturday, 11 October 2014, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group D

Last Game

Georgia 1 - 2 Rep Ireland

Sunday, 07 September 2014, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group D

No Republic issues for Bruce

Alex Bruce remains unfazed ahead of his Northern Ireland debut having previously played for the Republic of Ireland.

Last Updated: 04/02/13 at 21:54 Post Comment

Hull City's Alex Bruce set for an emotional night on Wednesday

Hull City's Alex Bruce set for an emotional night on Wednesday

The 28-year-old Hull City defender qualifies for both countries through his grandmother and initially opted to play for the Republic but was only capped in friendlies, meaning he was not tied to the country.

Former Northern Ireland manager Nigel Worthington first approached the defender in 2011 and he was called up by new boss Michael O'Neill for the last two World Cup qualifiers but was forced to pull out through injury.

As he prepares for his first involvement with Northern Ireland in Wednesday's friendly against Malta, Bruce, son of Hull boss Steve, said: "I'm not naive enough to say I'm not aware of it but for me what's in the past is in the past and I'm just looking forward to the future.

"I've declared myself for Northern Ireland, Michael's given me a fantastic opportunity to play international football. Being a footballer's a short career so I'm going to make the most of the opportunity and hopefully do as well as I can.

"My granny's from Bangor so I always knew, when I hadn't played a competitive game for the Republic that I was still available, and when that phone call came I had a long think about it.

"Unfortunately for Nigel he lost his job but Michael's come in and taken the bull by the horns and cracked on with the talks we've had. I made a decision and I'm just looking forward to playing for Northern Ireland.

"I've had pressure all my life. Obviously the situation at Hull, where my dad's the manager, has been a bit of a pressure cooker as well so I've had a few things like that to deal with over the years and pressure's something I don't really think too much about.

"It's water off a duck's back. I think any footballer will tell you that when you walk over that white line, what people do on the terraces, you're quite oblivious to it."

Wednesday's match will be O'Neill's eighth in charge, and the former Shamrock Rovers boss is still looking for his first win after three defeats and four draws.

St Johnstone's Alan Mannus will start in goal, while Huddersfield midfielder Oliver Norwood was forced to withdraw with a bruised foot.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

put Ince in my fantasy football team, so it's no surprise at all really. I do that to players. Also responsible for De Jong and Upson being injured. Think I'll transfer in Di Maria just to ruin United....

megabrow (cufc)
F365's Top Ten Surprise Strugglers

L

ovren? £20m always seemed a touch on the expensive side, but I wasn't expecting him to be quite such a waste of money

stevenjameshyde
F365's Top Ten Surprise Strugglers

H

alf of our players have the physical presence of a 14 year old girl. I don't know why people are always shocked that they're injured.

TheWhiz
Wenger baffled by injuries

Footer 365

Sky Bet Championship: Fulham thump Bolton, Huddersfield win at Wolves, Leeds held

Fulham thrashed Bolton 4-0 in the Championship, while Huddersfield won at Molineux to deny Wolves top spot.

Premier League: Sunderland boss Gus Poyet delighted Lee Cattermole stayed at club

Gus Poyet believes keeping Lee Cattermole was the best transfer decision he has made while at Sunderland.

Champions League: Liverpool out of sorts in 1-0 defeat at FC Basel

Liverpool paid the price for a disjointed performance as they fell to a 1-0 defeat to FC Basel in the Champions League.

Mail Box

It Was Better When City Were Rubbish

'I think I preferred it when we were s**t' says one City fan in the afternoon mailbox. There's a decent chat about the empty seats plus views on Liverpool and Roma...

Do City Really Need To Expand Their Stadium?

That's the question posed by one Man United fan in the mailbox after seeing the empty seats at the Etihad last night. Sadly, there isn't a single mail from a City supporter...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property