Tuesday, July 16, 2024
HomePremier LeagueEx-teammate calls England midfielder Declan Rice 'overrated'

Ex-teammate calls England midfielder Declan Rice ‘overrated’

James McClean has called Declan Rice ‘overrated’ and says the England midfielder is not ‘world class’.

McClean was a teammate of Rice’s for the Republic of Ireland before the latter changed his international allegiance to England after earning three friendly caps for the Boys in Green.

 

Rice has since established himself as an important part of the England side under Gareth Southgate and has won 52 caps for the Three Lions.

The 25-year-old is currently part of an England team who are heavily-fancied to win Euro 2024 this summer but McClean believes the midfielder’s praise from the English media is ‘over the top’.

McClean questioned Rice’s ability to dictate games and said the Arsenal midfielder cannot be compared to world-class talents such as Spain’s Rodri and Germany’s Toni Kroos.

“I think Declan Rice is overrated. Don’t get me wrong, I think he’s a very good footballer, but the way the English media wax lyrical about him is completely over the top,” he told RTE Sport.

“For me, he’s not world class. To me world class is someone who gets in every side in the world. I don’t think he does that.

I don’t think he gets in the Man City side ahead of Rodri. I know Toni Kross is now retiring, but to me Toni Kroos is world class. [Kroos] dictates the game, Rodri dictates the game, I don’t think Rice does that.

“He’s not someone who is going get on the half turn and play passes forward. He is very good at what he does.

 

“They play the same role, so why can’t they do the same things? If you’re going to give me this much hype and reputation, then surely he should be able to do what they do? That’s get the ball on the half turn, play passes forward, and dictate the play. I don’t think he does that.

“He’s good at what he does. He sees danger and puts out fires, but for the hype that surrounds him, I don’t think it’s justified.”

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