18-Year-Old Irish Underage International Set For Premier League Debut

18-Year-Old Irish Underage International Set For Premier League Debut

With Winston Reid out injured, Ireland U21 international Declan Rice could make his Premier League debut this weekend.

Speaking ahead of the game, West Ham manager Slaven Bilic spoke highly about Rice, who - at the age of just 17 - captained the West Ham U23s to win the Premier League 2 trophy recently.

West Ham play their final game of the season away to Burnley on Sunday.

We’re going to see. We have a game on Sunday and we have many injuries, but he’s one of them that may play. He’s in the squad.

Declan is very good for his age. He is extremely good, he is mature and it’s all based on the training and he plays very well for the Under-23s. He has a bright future in him and it’s all down to him.

He played a couple of games in the pre-season when we went to the States and we were missing a few players. I can see him being a really good player.

Rice moved to West Ham from Chelsea four years ago. He initially joined as a central midfielder but has since transitioned to centre-back.


The 18-year-old was given a new three-and-a-half year deal at West Ham earlier this season. He been on the bench as an unused substitute five times in the Premier League this season.

Rice, who qualifies to play for Ireland through his grandparents, was linked with a move to Arsenal in December.

See Also: Robbie Keane Could Be Playing In The Championship Next Season

PJ Browne
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