Former Republic of Ireland manager Mick McCarthy says that he remains hopeful Declan Rice will come back into the Irish set up, despite any backlash he may face.
Speaking to Balls.ie, McCarthy said that if the West Ham youngster can contribute to some on-field success for the country, this indecisive period will be quickly forgotten.
If he comes back, there will be a lot of people who will think 'Well he's been courted by someone else, that isn't right and he shouldn't now play for Ireland'.
If he comes back and he is brilliant and they qualify for the next European Championship and World Cup, it will all be forgotten, strangely enough.
McCarthy believes that it is the contact from Southgate that has turned Rice's head, with the success of the England team at this summer's World Cup likely giving the player some food for thought.
If Gareth Southgate is in Declan's ear saying 'Here listen pal, we've got this young team, you can come and play with John Stones and Harry Maguire, and I'll get Walker out right wing-back and you can play in there, and we are going to qualify for the next competitions'.
He's 19. Give the lad a chance.
Ultimately the ex-Ipswich Town manager believes the best thing for the player may be to step away from international football altogether in the short-term. He is however hopeful that he will eventually commit his future to Ireland.
My advice to him would be don't play for any of them for now. Get in the first team, play for West Ham. Get in the first team and have a brilliant season.
And then I'll tell you what, he will be better able because he might realise that he can play in either team, and he can make his choice.
I hope it's for us.
McCarthy was speaking at the launch of his new television punditry position with Virgin Media Sport. You can watch the full exclusive interview below.