West Ham’s Declan Rice backed to outshine Mason Mount and Man City star at Euro 2020
Kevin Nolan has told The Athletic that he expects West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice to play a ‘massive’ role and outshine Mason Mount, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish for England at this summer’s Euro 2020.
Gareth Southgate is expected to name his squad for the postponed tournament on Tuesday (Telegraph), and will be expected to select Rice, Mount and Foden with each standing out in the Premier League this season while Grealish could be hindered by his injury problems.
Rice offered a highly influential presence in David Moyes’ engine room as West Ham strove to qualify for a European competition, while Mount has thrived for Chelsea under Thomas Tuchel and Foden lit up the top-flight as Manchester City stormed to the title.
Foden also played an instrumental role in Man City reaching the Champions League final by running the show against Paris Saint-Germain in the semis, after which Rice took to Twitter to dub his compatriot ‘very, very special’.
Tuchel, meanwhile, lauds Mount as ‘the full package’ (Sky Sports), yet Nolan – an assistant coach at West Ham who shares a close relationship with Rice – believes it will be the Irons’ vice-captain who runs the show for England this summer.
“I get on really well with Declan —I have a brotherly love for him,” Nolan said. “He’s a proper player and he’s going to be massive for England in the Euros.
“I read the papers and they speak about Mason Mount, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish but Dec is going to be more important than all of those players.”
Southgate will hope that it is a team effort that sees England enjoy success at Euro 2020 this summer, with Foden, Mount or Grealish pulling the strings in behind Harry Kane and with Rice anchoring the engine room to offer cover to the Three Lions’ backline.
But it may be easier for Foden, Mount or Grealish to steal the headlines if they can create moments of magic and find the back of the net, yet Rice is certain to play a key role even if it could go under the radar as Southgate will need that foundation for the others to thrive.
Rice will also be expected to serve much more as a leader in the dressing room and on the pitch than the others, keeping everything in check and heads calm if matches start to get away from England.
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