“I love every minute of being at West Ham,” the eight magic words Hammers fans wanted to hear from Declan Rice.
After a week that saw the England international linked with a move to Manchester United and manager Manuel Pellegrini admit Rice could be sold for a price, the Hammers youngster has reassured fans (quotes sourced from Football.London via BT Sport) that he won’t be leaving the club anytime soon following West Ham’s 2-0 loss to Everton on Saturday.
Rice is a player who clearly loves the east London side and wants to remain there for the foreseeable future, and the club now has a duty to make to build the future team around the 20-year-old midfielder.
Of course, the obvious player to build the future team around would be Felipe Anderson as he’s been simply sensational since joining, but Rice is quickly developing into the heart and soul of the club so it’s a no-brainer.
The England international, who is valued at £31.5 million (by Transfermarkt), is the best player to come through the club in years. His professionalism and constant development on the pitch has made him someone who can grow into one of the best midfielders in the league in the future, and Pellegrini needs to be aware of this.
Playing at the base of a 4-1-4-1 formation has made Rice the engine room of West Ham this season, and this summer Pellegrini and the transfer committee have to make sure they bring in players that not only improve the side overall but can facilitate the development of the club’s new star man.
A steady backline with fullbacks who can partner well with Rice would be a good starting point, as well nailing on who the two starting central midfielders should be that can add extra creativity and defensive cover to lessen the burden for the 20-year-old midfielder should Pellegrini decide to keep the same formation for next season.
In Rice, West Ham has one of the best young prospects in English football, and now they need to build the future of their club around a player who can lead them to greatness in years to come.
West Ham fans, how important is Rice to the future of the club? Join the discussion by commenting below…