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Mar 9, 2011

O'Hara asked to represent Ireland

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy has revealed he is working hard on convincing Jamie O'Hara to commit his international future to Republic of Ireland.

• Pennant wants Ireland call

O'Hara, 24, has represented England at Under-21 level but is eligible to switch allegiance to Ireland if he chooses as he has Irish grandparents.

McCarthy, who managed Ireland at the 2002 World Cup finals, says the Football Association of Ireland have contacted O'Hara and that he has impressed on the midfielder his belief that he should take the offer up.

"I am trying to nip his ears to play - I think he should," McCarthy told the Birmingham Mail. "I've been right in his ear hole - just pulling his leg - telling him we need him to play because he'd be terrific.

"I want to have a good Irish team - he does qualify as far as I'm aware and the FAI have been in touch with him. He hasn't committed one way or the other but I am quite persuasive."

McCarthy has also said he hopes to sign O'Hara on a permanent deal from Tottenham if Wolves manage to avoid relegation this season.

"I want to sign him and I think Jamie would be happy to come" McCarthy said. "It will all be dependent on whether we can offer him Premier League football though. If we were safe, there would be no doubt that a deal would be done.

"Jamie wants to come and we want to sign him. He's here until the end of the season, for the next nine games. But if it all could be done tomorrow, I'd sign him if we could."

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