Manchester City were 2-1 victors over the weekend against West Ham, yet Pep Guardiola was left impressed by England international Declan Rice.
Speaking to NBC Sports after the result, the Catalan coach revealed that he thought Rice was ‘exceptional against City. With the West Ham star one of the Premier League’s best-performing midfielder’s this season.
Rice, who the Telegraph report is valued at £100m by West Ham, is a player who has been linked with City. However, rumours of any move have died down a lot in recent months.
Moreover, with West Ham dominating in the UEFA Europa League and looking set to compete for a top-four spot this season, Rice has no real reason to depart the east London side. And Guardiola liked with what he saw.
The City boss said when asked about West Ham’s performance: “They have more possession ball with Benrahma, with Lanzini, they have the quality to the player. Declan Rice is an exceptional player. We know how difficult they are.”
Indeed, Guardiola is clearly a big fan of Rice, even with the West Ham star having a less than impressive game at the Etihad Stadium. And as you would expect, City fans on social media were quick to react to these comments from the boss.
City fans urge Pep to sign Rice after praise
After all, Rice is a player City can afford to sign. Moreover, whilst links have died down hugely over the past few months, some supporters are keen for the England international to join the club one day.
The 22-year-old midfielder is one of the best ball-winners and carriers in the Premier League. Indeed, even with City having a large pool of players in this position, Rice would be a welcome addition one day in the future.
Here’s what some City fans had to say about Guardiola’s comments on Rice on Twitter…
Then you know what to do, Pep. Sign him up!— Owain Roderick (@owainroderick1) November 28, 2021
Pep knows ball— ⚡️🇧🇼 (@Priceless_Silva) November 28, 2021
Rice to city who says no— AN 47 (@wizards477) November 28, 2021
Impressed me today ngl— George #GraciasKun (@georgemcfc21) November 28, 2021
rice rice baby is indeed a good player baldy— peng ting 💎 (@TendzzXO) November 28, 2021
20m+Ake take it or leave it.— LetMeTalk (@PranabeshDas) November 28, 2021