Jamie Redknapp: Manchester City’s Fernandinho successor is playing for West Ham – City Watch

City Watch

Jamie Redknapp has identified West Ham midfielder Declan Rice as the ideal successor to Fernandinho at Manchester City.

Rice is one of many midfield names linked with Pep Guardiola’s side in recent months but recently signed a new deal with the Hammers, which will raise his transfer fee if West Ham are open to selling him.

The 19-year-old, who is at the centre of a tug-of-war between England and Ireland, scored the only goal in West Ham’s 1-0 win over Arsenal on Saturday, with an assist coming from former City man Samir Nasri on his return to the Premier League.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the match, pundit Jamie Redknapp said City must be considering Rice with the quality he is showing in the West Ham midfield.

“You look at players like Fernandinho at Manchester City and they must be looking at Declan Rice thinking “he’s the next one” because it’s so hard to find good players in that position,” Redknapp said.

“He’s come in from centre back and is now one of the best defensive midfielder’s around.”

Crocked Hammer, Jack Wilshere, also gave his views on Rice, and believes his teammate is on the path to becoming the Premier League’s best defensive midfielder.

Wilshere said: “I can’t believe he is still 19. I had obviously heard about him when I came to the club, but seeing him on the training ground, he has a big future ahead of him.

“I’m struggling to think of a defensive midfielder who does it better than him in the league.

“I’m not saying he is the best in the league but he is definitely on the right track.”