Mikey Johnston receives FIFA international clearance to play for Ireland

Mikey Johnston receives FIFA international clearance to play for Ireland

The Republic of Ireland has received a welcome boost with the news that Celtic starlet Mikey Johnston has declared for the national team, having received his FIFA international clearance.

The winger is currently on loan at Portuguese Primeira Liga side Vitória Guimarães and has completed the eligibility process.

This means he is now officially available for selection for the national side ahead of the March international fixtures against Latvia and France.


Johnston is Glasgow-born but qualifies for the Republic of Ireland through his grandfather, who was from Derry.


He began the eligibility process months ago, making Stephen Kenny aware of his desire to play for the Boys in Green.

The 23-year-old made his first-team debut in 2017 and has since gone on to win the Scottish Premiership three times with the Glasgow club, as well as two Scottish Cups and two Scottish League Cups.


He started in the 2019 Scottish Cup final, where Celtic claimed a 2-1 victory over Hearts and scored a decisive penalty in the 2020 Scottish Cup final, where Celtic claimed a penalty shoot-out victory over the same opposition.

Currently, on loan in Portugal, Johnston has enjoyed an impressive season for Vitória where he has made 20 appearances in all competitions, scoring three goals and providing three assists.

Speaking after confirmation of his International future, the player was beaming from ear to ear.

"I'm delighted to declare for the Republic of Ireland and excited for what my future holds in an Ireland shirt," he said.

"Myself and my family have always been proud of our Irish roots with my grandad hailing from Derry and to potentially now play for Ireland is something that really excites me.

"It's up to me now to impress the manager and to get selected to the squad but my focus now is to break into that squad and to make an impact for the team in a big year for the team.

"I've always watched the Ireland matches and the atmosphere always looks incredible. I can't wait to play at the Aviva Stadium and hopefully create some great moments for the team."

The exciting winger is a welcome addition to an already youthful panel, as recognised by manager Stephen Kenny.

"Mikey is an exciting player, a great individual talent and we're delighted to see him declare for the Republic of Ireland," he said.

"I'm looking forward to seeing him play at the Aviva Stadium, dribbling in the way that he can and we look forward to helping him fulfil his potential in an Ireland shirt."