MX23RW : Saturday, January 19 04:48:23

Declan Rice urged to try his luck in front of goal more often

Declan Rice urged to try his luck in front of goal more often
© Reuters
Rice scored his first goal in his 55th appearance.

Declan Rice revealed how his West Ham team-mates have been urging him to try his luck in front of goal after he finally opened his account against Arsenal.

Midfielder Rice, who turns 20 on Monday, grabbed his first career goal on his 55th appearance for the Hammers.

It was a vital strike, too, tucking away Samir Nasri's lay-off three minutes after half-time to secure a 1-0 win in front of a record crowd of 59,946 at the London Stadium.

"I can't put it into words," Rice told the club's website. "I think you could see on my face how much it meant to me.

"And the way the team celebrated, how much it meant to them for me to score as well, as they've all been on at me to score and start shooting more.

"To get the three points, to beat Arsenal and for me to score is unbelievable.

"Samir set it back and I knew I was in the box but I didn't really know where the goal was because I was stood side-on. It was a clean strike, a clean connection and there were a lot of bodies in the way and it went right into the top corner.

"You could see from the celebration I probably didn't know what to do, but I'm delighted!"

For Arsenal it was a fifth defeat of the season which dented their top-four aspirations, and they have won just four of their 11 matches on the road this season.

But captain Laurent Koscielny told the club website: "We don't think about that. We take it game after game.

"We worked well during the week to prepare and we had the ambition to get the three points. But in football you don't know, you have your opponent and I think they played well with quality.

"We need to keep our confidence and continue to work together, and the results will come."


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Mesut Ozil in action for Arsenal on November 3, 2018
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool22183150104057
2Manchester CityMan City22172359174253
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs22160646222448
4Chelsea22145340172347
5Arsenal22125546321441
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd22125544321241
7Watford229583232032
8Leicester CityLeicester229492625131
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham229493032-231
10Everton228683331230
11Wolverhampton WanderersWolves228592328-529
12Bournemouth2283113142-1127
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2275102430-626
14Crystal Palace2264122028-822
15Burnley2263132343-2021
16Southampton2247112339-1619
17Cardiff CityCardiff2254131941-2219
18Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2246121631-1518
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2225151337-2411

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