Rice West Ham

Sarri reveals how highly he rates West Ham midfielder Rice

Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has praised West Ham youngster Declan Rice ahead of tonight’s game against West Ham.

The 20-year-old has shone since establishing himself in the senior side at the London Stadium, making his senior England debut in the recent international break having controversially switched his allegiance from the Republic of Ireland.

Rice actually began his career in the youth teams at Stamford Bridge, before being released and joining West Ham aged 14.

Chelsea host West Ham at Stamford Bridge on Monday night, and Sarri revealed just how highly he rates the defensive midfielder.

“I think that he’s a very good player, very good in the defensive phase because he’s really very able to recover the ball,” Sarri revealed.

“He usually plays very close to the defensive line and, in the first match against West Ham (which finished 0-0), he was really a very big problem for us.

“I think he is improving in the offensive phase. He has improved during the season because I saw their last matches and I saw a very good midfielder.”