Paul Merson has come out in rousing support of Englishman Declan Rice, suggesting that his former club Arsenal should move for the holding midfielder.
Rice, 20, recently made the decision to change his national eligibility from Ireland to England, in the hope of breaking into Gareth Southgate’s team – and it’s something Merson thinks has only added to the midfielder’s value.
“Now he’s chosen England, he’s just added to his value. Everyone is looking for young English talent. He ticks all the boxes,” Merson wrote in his column for the Star.
“He’s got a massive future in the game but he’s got to keep on doing it and not get distracted by all the hype around him. He’s got to make the right decisions for his career, but there’s no reason to think he won’t because he’s handled this decision well.
Declan Rice is on fire today and his first goal for the club has topped off a wonderful performance!
Can he help West Ham preserve their lead in the final 20 minutes of the game?#WHUARS pic.twitter.com/VYrBd8yXgR
— 90min (@90min_Football) January 12, 2019
“West Ham will hope they can hang on to him for as long as possible, because he has become one of their most important players. I suspect that he will just keep on getting better and better.”
Arsenal are in the market for midfield help as both Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil look to be on their way out of the club, and Merson went on to typically suggest that the West Ham midfielder would be a perfect acquisition.
Merson wrote: “He signed a new contract but it’s not worth a whole lot of money and he could certainly earn a lot more elsewhere. Any of the top teams would take him.
Whether he decides to stay with the Hammers or make the switch to a top six club, Rice looks set to have a huge future in English football.