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Moyes makes Declan Rice demand

David Moyes insists that Declan Rice has to become a leader in the mould of Roy Keane and Tony Adams at West Ham.

The England star has been central to the Hammers’ season this term, captaining the club regularly and becoming perhaps one of the most important member of the squad in recent months.

The Irons, of course, are pushing for Champions League qualification and will hope to take a step closer to a top-four finish with a win over Norwich tonight.

Rice made his 150th Premier League appearance on New Year’s Day and is also likely to remain central to Gareth Southgate’s plans for England as the World Cup looms later this year.

And Moyes has urged the midfielder to take on the type of responsibility that Adams had at Arsenal and that Keane had when he was captaining Manchester United under the management of Sir Alex Ferguson, hoovering up trophies left, right, and centre.

Speaking to the London Evening Standard, the Hammers boss said: “I think he’s improving as a leader.

“He’s taking on more responsibility. I sort of demand of him [to be] driving the training, driving the levels.

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“The thing that Declan has got to his advantage is that he gets to see Harry Kane in training, Raheem Sterling and Harry Maguire. A chance to see the real top boys training and the levels, and a chance to see their mentality.

“There are a lot of players at these clubs who have got a real strong mentality and I want Declan to gain that for us.

“I look back at people who are great captains, Roy Keane and Tony Adams. People who drove teams and clubs on and were remembered.

“Mark Noble has played a huge part behind the scenes and Dec has probably been able to sit there and watch him and listen to him, see how he acts, because Nobes has been a great captain and a great leader. I hope Declan uses the opportunities he is getting to pick it up.”

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About Dave Langton

A journalist with 10 years' experience of working on National newspapers, now chief reporter covering the club that I've loved since I was a boy. Upton Park remains the greatest football stadium ever built.