West Ham’s Declan Rice has spoken highly of Tottenham midfielder Tanguy Ndombele and admitted he is excited to face him this season.
Spurs signed Ndombele this summer for a club record £53.8million (BBC) from Lyon and he will be looking to hit the ground running during his first taste of the Premier League.
The 22-year-old Frenchman is a box-to-box central midfielder that offers a great attacking threat, but is a powerhouse too that can defend and win the ball back for his team.
He’s likely to become the engine room for Mauricio Pochettino’s side and pre-season has started to show signs of it.
Rice emerged as a key defensive midfielder in West Ham’s senior team last season and is a major success to come out of the academy.
The 20-year-old England international was a real force in the Premier League last season and is being tipped for the elite level.
Rice has raved about Spurs midfielder Ndombele and explained he’s one of the players he is looking forward to facing in the new campaign.
“I’m really looking forward to playing against Ndombele,” Rice told talkSPORT.
“I watched him in the Champions League last season and he looked like a top, top player.
“The French boys here were raving about him, saying what a good player he was, so I’m looking forward to playing against Spurs and looking forward to playing against him.”
West Ham and Spurs always serve up a fiery encounter, but both teams have strengthened extremely well in the summer transfer window and are shaping up nicely.
The two rivals have to wait until 23 November before clashing at the London Stadium in the league and there is no doubt the midfield battle will be huge.
Rice and Hammers captain Mark Noble will still provide the base this season to allow their attacking teammates to flourish, while Spurs have engines likes Ndombele and Moussa Sissoko at their disposal.
Ndombele is certainly someone to keep an eye on during the new campaign, as his physicality should match English football perfectly and he definitely got an eye for a pass going forward.