Prior to his injury which he picked up on international duty with England, Rice had not missed a single minute of Premier League football for West Ham, which was a big factor behind their push for the top four.
Lee has previously spoken to The Transfer Tavern about Rice, giving the 22-year old huge praise, and it’s not just pundits who have noticed his performances with Manchester United reportedly interested in signing him this summer.
Speaking on how the longer Rice is out injured the more apparent it will become that West Ham depend on him and where he ranks amongst other players in the league, Lee told FFC:
“I think the longer that he is out injured, the more West Ham will start to miss him but they have been okay without him for a couple of games.
“I think he’s certainly been one of the best players in the Premier League and if he’s not on the shortlist for the PFA player of the year I’ll be amazed.”
David Moyes has previously admitted that the club will have to listen to offers for both Rice and Tomas Soucek this season, even if they succeed in their attempts to secure a top four finish.
In the last round of international fixtures, Rice earned two Man of the Match awards, which highlights how important he will be for the Three Lions this summer.