Sebastien Haller names West Ham player with 'world class' potential

Sebastien Haller celebrating

Former West Ham forward Sebastien Haller has told talkSPORT that Declan Rice has the potential to become a "world class player."

Rice has played every minute of West Ham's eye-catching Premier League campaign, which sees the Hammers currently sitting inside the top four.

He has captained the side for the majority of those games, and clearly made a positive impression on Haller, who moved to Dutch giants Ajax for £20.25m in January.

The Ivory Coast international was impressed by Rice's leadership qualities, and feels that the 22-year-old has the attributes to establish himself as a star in the game.

"He has everything. He’s a good captain, and he’s technically good and strong.

"The only thing I can wish him is to be a world class player, because he has the potential," he said.

GIVEMESPORT's Sam Brookes says...

Rice's stock only seems to be rising at the moment. David Moyes has consistently handed him the captain's armband this season, showing that he has enormous faith in the youngster.

At international level, Gareth Southgate also seems to rate Rice, having started him in each of England's UEFA Nations League matches in 2020.

So, how can Rice become a world class player? 

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Whose career is this?

In truth, he is not far away from that level. This term he has made 1.9 interceptions per game, and averaged an 87.5% passing success rate in the Premier League. These numbers are higher than any of his West Ham teammates. They indicate that he is capable of winning the ball back regularly, and then keeping hold of it for his team.

Perhaps Rice could add more goal threat to his game. Fellow midfielder Tomas Soucek has been a menace from set-pieces this season, scoring eight league goals in 2020/21. In contrast, Rice has just a single goal to his name, but has the chance to add to this tally in the months ahead.

If he can start to pose a threat in the opposition box as well, Rice will be recognised as a far more complete midfielder and the world class argument becomes that bit more compelling.

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