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“Obviously” – Declan Rice piles on the praise for Manchester City and a Pep Guardiola first-team mainstay



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Arsenal and England midfielder Declan Rice has piled on the praise for Manchester City and fellow defensive midfield star Rodri during recent interviews this week.

The two sides and top-class midfielders will go head-to-head in the Premier League this weekend, with both sides having their eyes set on a victory that would go a long way to establishing themselves as a serious title contender for the remaining weeks of the season.

Manchester City fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat at the Emirates Stadium when the two sides met earlier on in the season, but have since gone on to find their form amid fears from rival clubs that Pep Guardiola’s side could be on the verge of putting together a long winning run.

Rice and his Arsenal teammates will certainly have other ideas in mind, but the Englishman has not stayed away from being open to praising his Premier League title challengers, and one of his opposition players ahead of Sunday afternoon’s meeting.

Speaking via The Telegraph, Declan Rice was clear in his belief that Manchester City are the very best team in world football at present, despite Arsenal sitting top of the Premier League table and finding themselves in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals too.

“There’s no doubt that Man City are the best team in the world at the minute,” the former West Ham United captain said ahead of the weekend’s showdown with the Etihad Stadium side in the Premier League.

Rice was also asked to discuss some of his inspirations in defensive midfield, and how he consistently looks to improve his game amid the intensity of the football calendar at both club and national team level.

“You look at the best number sixes in the world; obviously Man City, Rodri is arguably the best,” the 25-year-old admitted during a recent press conference.

“How he plays, how he’s always central, how he always connects the back line and the forward players, how he’s always in the middle of the pitch.”

Rodri has long been a mainstay at the base of Manchester City’s midfield, and his contributions to the club in all departments have played a significant role in their claiming of all trophies available since his arrival in 2019.

Having joined the club from Atletico Madrid, and operating as a back-up to Fernandinho at first, the Spanish international has since gone on to make the defensive midfield role at the Etihad Stadium his very own, and almost impossible to displace.