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Liam Lawrence On ‘Huge Talent’ Rice: “He’s A Better Version Of Eric Dier”

Former Republic of Ireland midfielder Liam Lawrence was full of praise for West Ham’s young star Declan Rice but outlined that he cannot understand the 20-year old’s decision to consider representing England.

Rice has been mulling over his international future since August when then manager Martin O’Neill outlined that he had left the young midfielder out of his squad amid interest from England.

With a decision expected from the West Ham man before the start of the European qualifiers in March, Lawrence outlined that despite being born in England himself, he cannot understand the thinking behind Rice’s dilemma.

Declan Rice fai

“I can’t understand the thinking of it,” began Lawrence speaking Euro 2020 500 Days To Go event at the Aviva Stadium.

“He’s already played for Ireland. There’s a lot of talk about it at the moment as he’s such a huge talent, so we want to get him on board.

“I hope he makes that decision, because in the qualifying games, he’s going to be important.”

The 20-year old’s decision has come under even more intense scrutiny due to his tremendous performances at the heart of the West Ham midfield this season which have earned him widespread praise from across the footballing world.

Declan Rice Mick McCarthy

McCarthy had outlined that he would build his team around Rice should he declare for Ireland and former Stoke and Sunderland midfielder Lawrence agrees that the young man could be a hugely important player for the Boys in Green in the future.

“He’s a huge talent. Big clubs are looking at him already. For me, he’s a better version of Eric Dier at Spurs, and that’s a huge compliment.

“Let’s just see if we can get him on board, and if anyone can persuade him, Mick can.”

With Euro 2020 beginning in 500 days and McCarthy’s first set of qualifiers set to start in March, Lawrence feels that having matches in Dublin will be great motivation for the Irish players ahead of the tournament.

“It’ll be a great atmosphere I’m sure the Irish fans will mix with whatever fans are coming over and if we could qualify and make it it would add that carnival atmosphere.

“I would think it would be motivation for the players. If I was in that squad and that was an incentive I’d be motivated. Imagine playing at the Aviva with a fullhouse it would be unbelievable.”

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Author: Oisin McQueirns

Oisin McQueirns is a digital journalist at Pundit Arena. Massive fan of Leeds United, Ric Flair and Trusting The Process. Contact him here [email protected]