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West Ham: Tom Clarke drops exciting Declan Rice hint ahead of Sevilla

Declan Rice looks set to start West Ham United’s Europa League round of 16 first leg tie against Sevilla this evening.

What’s the latest?

That’s according to a claim made by Tom Clarke, with the West Ham correspondent revealing in a recent article for football.london that – despite the midfielder missing the 1-0 defeat to Liverpool with a virus, as well as claims suggesting the 23-year-old is touch and go for Thursday – the England international is now expected to start at the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium.

In his report, Clarke writes: “David Moyes is expected to make changes to his side that put in an excellent, albeit fruitless, performance against Liverpool on the weekend with Declan Rice set to return to the side.

“Rice missed out at Anfield after contracting a virus but the Hammers key midfielder is set for a return to the starting XI in Seville this evening.”

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Supporters will be ecstatic

Considering just how impressive Rice has been for West Ham in the current campaign, the news that the midfielder is set to start what is arguably the Hammers’ biggest game of the season is sure to have left the London Stadium faithful ecstatic.

Indeed, the £75m-rated Irons talisman has proven over the course of the last 12 months that he is one of the leading defensive midfielders in world football.

FBREF ranks him in the top seven per cent of all midfielders in Europe’s big five leagues for passes completed, as well as the top six per cent for progressive carries of the ball, the top 25 per cent for dribbles completed, the top four per cent for interceptions and the top 23 per cent for both non-penalty goals and assists.

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As such, it is clear to see that Rice’s return to the starting XI against Sevilla will significantly increase the Hammers’ chances of leaving Spain with a positive result – something that would come as a huge boost to their odds of progressing to the next round of the competition.

In other news: Forget Bowen: Moyes must unleash “exquisite” £58k-p/w WHU dynamo, he’s the best choice

Article title: West Ham: Tom Clarke drops exciting Declan Rice hint ahead of Sevilla

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