Declan Rice praises West Ham U18 teammate Jahmal Hector-Ingram and targets U21 recognition

West Ham Upton Park

One West Ham United teenager has been talking about another.

West Ham United youngster Declan Rice has been speaking to the club’s official website about the Hammers’ U18 side, mentioning one player in particular.

Rice was part of the side that defeated their Aston Villa counterparts 2-1 on Saturday courtesy of an own-goal and a strike from substitute Jahmal Hector-Ingram.

The 16-year-old centre forward came off the bench to net the winner and after the game Rice was quick to praise his teammate.

“We brought on Jahmal and he really was a threat up front and managed to score the winner for us,” Rice said.

Hector-Ingram has played three matches for West Ham’s under-21 side to date but he is yet to get on the score-sheet at that level. However, he and Rice will be targeting a regular step-up in due course and more performances like Saturday’s will do them no harm at all.

Rice is a 16-year-old midfielder who has only featured at the higher level once, although speaking to he said, “Hopefully, after Christmas, if I can keep performing well, I might be able to get a few more Development Squad games under my belt.”

West Ham have a number of exciting young players coming through their ranks right now but for all of them, including Rice and Hector-Ingram, it is going to be a long hard climb to the top.

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