Declan Rice has been one of the most talked about individuals in the Premier League this season due to a lack of clarity regarding his future at both club and international level.
The West Ham youth product’s refusal to put pen to paper on a new deal with the Hammers is giving the supporters plenty of cause for concern about where his future lies, but speculation regarding his international future has become the most intriguing sub-plot in his fledgling career.
And a recent report from the Daily Star suggests that a decision is looming on the horizon, with Rice set to pledge his international future to the England national team.
It’s a decision which Gareth Southgate and the rest of the established England setup will be delighted with after witnessing Rice’s hugely encouraging development in the past twelve months, and it’s fair to say they have high hopes for him if the report is anything to go by.
The report claims that Rice was invited to St George’s Park earlier this month where he ‘was presented with a wide range of statistical data showing him how he could fit into the England set-up.’
Considering how well Rice has been operating in a holding midfield role so far this season, it’s more than likely that Southgate is planning on utilising his quality in place of Eric Dier when the Tottenham man is absent through injury or suspension.
The report also details Southgate’s enthusiasm to have Rice on board and his vision for the Three Lions’ future as further motivating factors behind his decision.
There is nothing concrete or official to substantiate these claims at this moment in time, but the emergence of a feel good factor around the English national side and the extra touches from Southgate suggest that it’s only a matter of time before Rice confirms the suspicions of the British media.
If that does indeed prove to be the case, it will represent another fine piece of management from Southgate as he continues to transform the landscape of English international football.
West Ham fans – thoughts? Let us know below!