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Manuel Pellegrini: 'Declan Rice will be a top player'

Pellegrini: 'Declan Rice will be top player'
© Reuters
West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini tips Declan Rice to enjoy a bright future in the game following his match-winning performance against Arsenal.

West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini has tipped Declan Rice to enjoy a bright future in the game following his match-winning performance against Arsenal this afternoon.

Rice scored the only goal of the game to cap a man-of-the-match display at the London Stadium, opening his account for the club having recently signed a new long-term contract.

Pellegrini believes that the 19-year-old has the potential to become a "top player" for club and country and has been impressed with his progress so far.

"I am sure that Declan will be a top player. He is improving in every game that he plays, he is now more used to giving us a good attack and not playing so many backward passes," Pellegrini told reporters at his post-match press conference.

"He is very strong in aerial duels, he is strong in one-on-ones, he has great technique as he demonstrated in the goal he scored, so I am sure that we are seeing a top player soon. We will see that not only for West Ham but also for the national team who he'll decide to play for.

"Maybe in that position he can score more goals, but I think the second step for him to continuing improving is to try to have a good view of the pitch. That is what we are working with him on every week."

West Ham's victory was their first at home to Arsenal since 2006.


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Arsenal manager Unai Emery watches on during his side's Premier League clash with West Ham on January 12, 2019
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