Ian Wright has told BBC Radio 5 Live that he believes West Ham United star Declan Rice is the best England have as a holding midfielder – and prefers the Hammers ace to Tottenham Hotspur star Eric Dier.
Rice, 20, recently switched his international allegiance to England after talking to Gareth Southgate. He had previously earned three caps with the Republic of Ireland, but those appearances were friendlies.
The Hammers star has been in excellent form alongside captain Mark Noble. Making the holding-midfield role his own, Rice has missed just three league games all season. He has started every match since September 1.
Dier, meanwhile, has been in and out of the Tottenham side of late due to injury. Arsenal legend Wright believes Rice is better than Dier, and wants to see the West Ham ace in the England side for March’s fixtures.
“It’s a position that we struggle to fill,” Ian Wright said. “We haven’t got a player that can do the role as well as we’re seeing Declan Rice do it. Yeah [I think he is better than Eric Dier in that position. Eric isn’t playing.
"He’s nailed his colours to the mast. He’s in top form, bring him in, let’s have a look. He’s got everything, comfortable on the right and the left. He sees danger, scores goals, what are we waiting for?”
Dier is an excellent player. The former Sporting Lisbon man has shown that he can excel in front of the defence, even attracting interest from Bayern Munich. But right now, Rice is better.
Though the 20-year-old does have plenty of competition, he simply has to feature against Czech Republic and Montenegro at the end of March in the Euro 2020 qualifiers.
The likes of Fabian Delph, Jordan Henderson and Sean Longstaff are other contenders, but the player that may pose the biggest threat is Dier’s teammate – Harry Winks.