West Ham United fans have a new favourite in Declan Rice and it seems they are not alone.
Rice turned 20 last month but looks like he has been bossing Premier League midfield battles with West Ham for two decades.
The youngster was imperious again in the 1-1 draw with Liverpool on Monday night.
The central midfielder, who can also play at centre back, is reportedly high on Pep Guardiola’s wishlist at Manchester City this summer (Manchester Evening News).
Everyone loves Rice
Rice is so good he has two countries fighting over his international allegiance.
Both England and the Republic of Ireland, for whom Rice has already featured in friendly matches, want to build a team around him.
But former Hammers boss Sam Allardyce told talkSPORT he simply can’t believe Gareth Southgate is dragging his heels over West Ham’s captain-in-waiting.
“He was outstanding against Liverpool,” Allardyce told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.
“There was a bit of magic involved moving him into midfield… He is brilliant.
‘He’s got to be considered surely’
“If he hasn’t committed to Republic of Ireland yet, (England should) play him quickly. Very, very quickly.
“With the way he’s playing at the moment, he’s got to be considered, surely. He’s playing every game in the Premier League and you’re talking two positions now.
“His performances in midfield are getting better, for me, and that’s a great sign for West Ham.”
Rice tipped to choose Ireland
Speculation is that Rice is set to commit to Ireland (The Irish Times).
But the midfield star has been taking his time over the decision.
Thankfully for Hammers fans Rice’s club future was settled at the turn of the year.
After a lot of speculation Rice finally signed a new six-year contract at the London Stadium on Christmas Day.