Thursday, February 9, 2023

Manchester City To Rival Manchester United For West Ham Star: Good Option For Pep?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent report, The Sun mentioned that Manchester City are set to rival Manchester United for West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice next summer. It is understood that Man City have identified the English midfield enforcer as a long-term replacement for Fernandinho and could move in for him at the end of this campaign.

Rice’s Decent Run Of Form At The English Capital

Rice has enjoyed a remarkable rise at the London Stadium over the past few seasons and deserves credit for establishing himself as a prominent feature at the heart of the Hammers midfield. The 22-year-old made 35 appearances for the East London side in the previous campaign, finding the back of the net twice and securing one assist across all competitions.

The London-born midfield ace managed to do a little bit of everything at the centre of the park after he averaged 1.8 tackles, 1.8 interceptions, 1.1 clearances, 0.8 shots, 0.7 key passes and 0.9 dribbles per game in the 2020-21 Premier League season. He was even accurate when distributing possession from midfield, as evidenced by his pass success rate of 88% in top-flight football (stats via whoscored).

Rice’s current deal with the Hammers is set to run out in the summer of 2024, so Man City would have to make a big-money offer if they are to convince Moyes to part ways with his prized asset at the end of this season.

Manchester City to rival Manchester United for Rice who is seen in the photo
West Ham United v Crystal Palace 28 August 2021 London, Premier League Football, West Ham United v Crystal Palace – Declan Rice of West Ham United. Photo by Mark Leech. London UK *** West Ham United gegen Crystal Palace 28. August 2021 London, Premier League Fußball, West Ham United gegen Crystal Palace Declan Rice von West Ham United Foto von Mark Leech London UK PUBLICATIONxINxGERxSUIxAUTxONLY Copyright: xMarkxLeechxOffside

Is Rice A Good Option For Man City?

Rice loves a tackle in midfield and has got the tenacity to make some crucial interceptions for his team. He is usually quick to react to the danger and doesn’t mind working his socks off to make life difficult for the opposition. The 26-time England international is a tidy passer of the ball as well and can create some decent plays for his teammates in the opposition half. He can also pull off a few energetic sprints from midfield.

The only thing that Rice needs to work on improving is his productivity in the final third. Adding a few more goals and assists to his game could help the player succeed at a top club like Man City where he will be expected to win trophies every season. We can expect the Hammers star to add a lot of bite and steel to Pep Guardiola’s midfield which makes him a decent option for Man City to pursue next summer.

Rice has got the right mindset to help the Mancunian giants maintain their stranglehold in English football and also challenge for the UEFA Champions League trophy over the next few years. Plus, he will serve as an ideal replacement for Fernandinho who is currently experiencing the twilight years of his playing career at the Etihad Stadium.

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