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Is Declan Rice the Future of England's Defense?

by Shuaib Sharieff
by Shuaib Sharieff

Declan Rice is a serious talent. At 19, the Irishmen could pave his way to success if he decides to join Gareth Southgate and the Lions. But if he joins, Rice would have some stiff opponents to encounter.

Could Rice soar and become an England starter?

Who is Declan Rice?

Declan Rice is a player from West Ham United who joined in 2014 from Chelsea's academy. Born in London with Irish grandparents, Rice decided to represent his lineage nationally by making his debut for Ireland in May 2017; a month after making his Premier League debut.

Recently Gareth Southgate confessed to his attempts at getting Rice to join the Lions. But he did not guarantee a place in the squad for him.

Playing Style

Rice has three appearances for the Republic of Ireland. — by Shuaib Sharieff
Rice has three appearances for the Republic of Ireland. — by Shuaib Sharieff

Rice was originally a defensive midfielder who converted to a CB under Slaven Bilic. The Irishmen is a strong tackler and fairly capable in using both of his feet. Rice plays in a back three for West Ham and is more accustomed to clearing the ball than playing out of the back.

Rice last season achieved a monstrous 4.57 clearances per 90 but only played about 36 passes per 90 and completed a measly 79% of those passes.

Considering Southgate uses CBs that are all comfortable on the ball, Rice could struggle to find a place in the starting lineup.

Rice vs England

by Shuaib Sharieff
by Shuaib Sharieff

Overall from a defensive perspective, Rice keeps up with the crowd with 4.57 clearances and 1.68 interceptions per 90. But the Irishmen has the 2nd worst pass completion rate and the least passes attempted per 90.

This shows that despite being a solid CB, Rice's struggles with maintaining possession will likely put him behind the other young talents such as John Stones, Joe Gomez, and Harry Maguire.

This article was originally published on @shubster567