West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini has defended Declan Rice’s contribution after he received some criticism on international duty with England.
Rice played both games as England continued their 100 per cent record in Euro 2020 qualifying, but he was perhaps seen as too conservative in his passing and is under more intense scrutiny at international level.
But as per the Sun, Pellegrini said: “Declan is a young player but he is improving in every game. He is just 20 years old and at his age, being a holding midfield player for England is an important merit for him and demonstrates the way he works and plays in every game.
“You can’t expect a player not to make mistakes. Of course he will make mistakes, as every player does. In the way he is improving, he’s the number one in that position. If he has any muscle problem we will rest him – we have Carlos Sanchez. But for the moment, Declan must continue playing games.”
TBR’s View – Critics of Rice on international duty just lazy
Rice is a holding midfielder who is adept at breaking up play and playing the ball into more creative players. That’s what he’s done for West Ham to get himself into the England squad so that’s what he’s going to do once he’s there.
Lazy critics say he should be doing more or blame him for one misplaced pass against Kosovo, but he remains a hugely talented holding midfielder who is only going to get better.
West Ham fans know how good he is, as does the manager and that’s the most important thing for Rice at this moment in time.