Declan Rice should be in Arsenal’s sights, says Paul Merson in his latest Sky Sports column
Paul Merson says Arsenal must prioritise a holding midfielder – and join Chelsea in the battle for West Ham’s Declan Rice.
Arsenal need a player like Rice
The holding midfield position is a massive part of football now. I think some people look at the holding midfielders and think they could easily do it. They think they can easily sit in front of the back four and pass the ball five or 10 yards every time they get it, but it’s a very hard job.
It’s so hard to not get too involved in the game, to stay patient and to stay in position in front of back four.
Declan Rice in action against Everton
Chelsea have been linked with him, but I don’t know why Arsenal aren’t looking at Declan Rice.
Arsenal are crying out for a holding midfield player. They don’t need a midfielder who’s going to be on the edge of the opposition box, they need a disciplined defensive midfielder, who is going to sit in front of the back four and organise the side; one who, when he gets the ball, gives it simple with 10-yard passes.
When you look back at the likes of Roy Keane later in his career and Claude Makelele, they were the best because they never got involved. They just did the simple things.