Kalvin Phillips makes claim about West Ham star after England win in Euro 2020 opener
Gareth Southgate’s men opened their tournament with an important 1-0 victory over Croatia.
Raheem Sterling scored the only goal after a brilliant assist from Phillips.
Plenty of fans lauded Phillips’s performance, with many feeling that he was the man of the match. There was also praise from the likes of Nigel de Jong and Michael Ballack on social media.
But Rice deserves a lot of credit for giving Phillips the platform to produce such a superb display.
The Hammers star went about his business with little fuss. And Phillips suggested after the victory that he really enjoys playing alongside the 22-year-old.
“I love playing with Declan,” he told BBC One. “I love playing in that role where I have a little bit of license to go forward and I know that Declan’s behind me, backing me up if I ever get beat.
“There’s a lot of talk about me and Declan fighting for a position but I think when you look at it and we play together, we play really well together. It’s an honour playing with Declan.”
Phillips proves point as Declan Rice shines for England in Euro 2020 victory
Heading into the tournament, Rice was arguably one of the players who looked to be guaranteed a spot in the lineup.
He has enjoyed another outstanding season. And with doubts over Jordan Henderson’s fitness, the West Ham man was never going to be left out.
But Phillips has staked a huge claim to join him as a key man in this tournament.
The Leeds star stole the show. He has not always managed to convince rival fans that he is good enough for the international stage.
But he was absolutely superb on Sunday.
And the partnership with Rice could be pivotal as the Three Lions look to navigate their way through the tournament.
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