Jamie Carragher heaps praise on Declan Rice and compares him to Man Utd legend | Football


Declan Rice scored Arsenal’s winning goal against Luton Town (Picture: Getty)

Jamie Carragher has compared Arsenal’s man of the moment Declan Rice to Manchester United legend Roy Keane.

Questions were raised over the wisdom of shattering their club record to sign the former West Ham skipper in a £105million deal in the summer, but Mikel Arteta’s judgement has been thoroughly vindicated.

Rice enhanced his burgeoning reputation with another matchwinning contribution against Luton in midweek but it has been his force of personality as much as his talents on the pitch that are having a transformative effect on Arteta’sside.

Carragher believes Rice’s impact at Arsenal is similar to way in which Virgil van Dijk elevated Liverpool following his record move to Anfield from Southampton, while he currently believes the 24-year-old would get in Manchester City’s team ahead of their own midfield linchpin Rodri.

‘There is no bigger compliment I can give to Rice than this: I would rather have him in my team than Rodri,’ Carragher told the Daily Telegraph.

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‘I feel the same way about Rice that I felt about Roy Keane when he joined Manchester United for a British record fee in 1993, and Alan Shearer when he joined Newcastle United in 1996. Harry Kane is another; he was a guarantee for Bayern Munich this summer.

‘From the moment he joined Arsenal, you knew that Rice would be brilliant. He has been probably the most influential player in the Premier League this season and, every time I watch him, he reminds me of Keane.

‘He has that same presence, and he has a passing ability that is incredibly underrated.

For Arsenal, the move for Rice was a no-brainer. I believe we will be talking about him as an Arsenal great in seven or eight years, and that his £105 million fee will look like a snip.

‘Ultimately, he could be for Arsenal what Virgil van Dijk has been for Liverpool. Van Dijk cost £75 million but, after everything he has achieved at Anfield, that fee is rightly regarded as a bargain.

City were interested, of course, and there would have been no chance for Arsenal this season if Rice had gone to the Etihad instead of the Emirates.

‘With him in their team, Arsenal have a player who will become a club legend — and a man who could bring the Premier League title back to north London.’


MORE : Manchester United offered Dortmund star Donyell Malen in exchange for Jadon Sancho

MORE : Mikel Arteta praises David Raya’s ‘impressive’ form despite latest blunders against Luton Town

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