The Granny Race begins

Birmingham defender Alex Bruce has decided to declare for the Republic of Ireland, despite being selected in the Northern Ireland under-21 side to face Israel. Bruce was born in Manchester and qualifies to play for both countries through his grandparents. His dad Steve played for Manchester United but never won a full England cap so maybe that’s part of his son’s reason to declare. Either way it seems new Republic manager Steve Staunton, who promised to dust off the Granny Rule on his appointment, has wasted no time in claiming his first player from right under the eyes of Lawrie Sanchez.