The 19-year-old Royals Academy defender was named in the Republic of Ireland Under 21 squad for a big Euro qualifier against Andorra in Waterford later this month.

He has chosen a different path to take than dad, Martin, who could have represented Ireland through his parents.

Martin, also a former Reading FC and Arsenal player, qualified through his Galway-born mother and his dad, who hailed from Fermanagh.

But he resisted Jack Charlton's attempts to persuade him to play for Ireland and he went on to win 43 caps for England.

However, Niall has opted to represent Ireland and he told The Herald in Ireland: "I'm really looking forward to linking up with the U21s. There's a strong Reading contingent in the Irish U21s and it'll be good to hook up with them.

"Dad used to get a lot of stick from his family for playing for England, I was aware of all that so it wasn't really a big decision for me to represent Ireland.

"I have lots of family in Galway, we went there for holidays a lot and they are very proud that I have decided to represent Ireland.

"There was no big discussion with dad about this, it was just the natural thing for me to do and I know I'll have lots of support there from family if I am picked to play in the game in Waterford.

"I was named as backup for an England U18 squad but once Noel King and the FAI got in touch, my decision was made."