Irish U-21 Declan Rice Earns Plaudits For Performance Against Man City

Irish U-21 Declan Rice Earns Plaudits For Performance Against Man City

In only his third Premier League start for West Ham, Declan Rice was up against it today as the Hammers traveled to Manchester City.

Having come on mid-week for the injured Winston Reid as West Ham suffered a humbling defeat to an Everton side supposed to be struggling themselves, a free-scoring City side were probably the last thing the London-born centre-half wanted to be up against.

Yet, living up to his tag as a very promising young player, Rice delivered a performance that perhaps best demonstrates what he can do, and what he has yet to learn.

After a fairly frenetic start to the match, a lack of restraint from Rice made him the first to enter Mike Dean's book.

The opportunity for "bantz" was not missed by City's Twitter account.


Rising to the occasion though, Rice played his part in a very structured first-half performance from the visitors.


It got to the point where some English fans were getting a bit carried away about a player who has played at underage level for Ireland across all levels.

With a lead to defend as the second-half kicked off, there was never any doubt that City's response would be ferocious.

As is to be expected of an eighteen-year old, Rice did look shaky at times, and, when Nicolas Otamendi ultimately dragged the league leaders level, Rice will look back at the sequence of events leading to the goal and know he could have done better.


With their backs now firmly to the wall, one got the sense that City's proclivity for snatching late winners would work against West Ham's favour.

A wonderful pass over the top from Kevin De Bruyne played David Silva in. Touching the ball by Adrian, City established a slim lead they were unlikely to relinquish.

However, looking far more capable than they did during their mid-week defeat to Everton, West Ham and Rice will take plenty of positives from today's defeat.

Plenty of West Ham fans were very happy with what they had witnessed from the Irish U-21, Declan Rice.


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Arthur James O'Dea

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