He is considered as one of the best defensive midfielders in the world.
|Full name||Declan Rice|
|Date of birth||14 January 1999|
|Place of birth||Kingston upon Thames, England|
|Height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|2013–2015||West Ham United|
|2015–2023||West Ham United||204||(10)|
|2015–2016||Republic of Ireland U17||6||(2)|
|2016–2017||Republic of Ireland U19||6||(0)|
|2017–2018||Republic of Ireland U21||5||(0)|
|2018–2019||Republic of Ireland||3||(0)|
| *Club domestic league appearances and goals, correct as of 17:14, 30 September 2023 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals, correct as of 22:06, 12 September 2023 (UTC)
Rice began his professional career at West Ham United, having been released by Chelsea's academy, and proceeded to establish himself as a key first-team player. He was named in the UEFA Europa League Team of the Season in the 2021–22 season, and captaining the club to a UEFA Europa Conference League title in 2023, also being named the competition's Player of the Season. In July of that same year, Rice signed for Arsenal for what was reported as a club and British record transfer fee.
Eligible to play for England or the Republic of Ireland, prior to 2019 Rice represented the Republic of Ireland internationally at both youth and senior levels. He subsequently changed his national allegiance and made himself available for selection by England. Rice made his England debut in 2019 and has represented the country at UEFA Euro 2020 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Rice was born and raised in Kingston upon Thames, Greater London. His paternal grandparents were from Douglas, County Cork, in Ireland. He grew up in Kingston upon Thames and joined the academy of Chelsea in 2006, as a seven-year-old. In 2013, after his release at age 14, he joined the academy of West Ham United after a trial period in the spring. West Ham United Academy coach Trevor Bumstead stated it was Rice's determination and persistence that helped him break through the ranks at West Ham. Rice won the Premier League Cup in 2016 with the under-21s and the Premier League 2 Division 2 in 2020 with the under-23s.
On 16 December 2015, two years after joining West Ham United at youth level, Rice signed his first professional contract with the club. Rice received his first call-up to the West Ham senior squad for the games against Sunderland and Everton in April 2017, after impressing in the under-23 team. He made his senior debut against Burnley on the last day of the 2016–17 Premier League season, coming on as a 91st-minute substitute for Edimilson Fernandes in a 2–1 away win, five days after captaining the under-23's to promotion with a 2–1 win at Newcastle United. His first-team debut came on 19 August 2017 in a 3–2 defeat at Southampton. In April 2018, Rice was named as runner-up for the 2017–18 Hammer of the Year award behind Marko Arnautović.
On 22 December 2018, he made his 50th appearance for West Ham, becoming the first player to do so while still a teenager since Michael Carrick. On 28 December 2018, Rice signed a new contract until 2024 with the option of an additional year. On 12 January 2019, Rice scored his first goal for West Ham and was named man of the match in a 1–0 win against Arsenal, in West Ham's 50th Premier League game at the London Stadium. On 20 April, Rice was named on the shortlist for the PFA Young Player of the Year award, which was eventually awarded to Rice's England teammate Raheem Sterling. At the end of the 2018–19 season, he was named the Players' Player of the Year and won the award for Individual Performance of the Season, for his match winning game against Arsenal, and was named the Young Hammer of the Year for the third consecutive season.
On 28 December 2019, Rice captained West Ham for the first time, at age 20, in a 2–1 home loss against Leicester City. He scored his first and only Premier League goal of the season on 17 July 2020, with an outside-the-box strike against Watford, in a 3–1 win. In the 2019–20 season, Rice played in all 38 league games for West Ham, playing every single minute. He was in the Premier League's top five players for both tackles and interceptions leading West Ham players in both categories and making more passes than any other West Ham player. He was named Hammer of the Year for the first time in 2020.
On 15 February 2021, Rice scored his first goal of the season when he converted the penalty and put the team in the lead against Sheffield United in a home league win that ended 3–0. In April 2021, having played in all of West Ham's games so far in the 2020–21 season, Rice was ruled out for four weeks with a knee injury picked-up on international duty with England.
On 16 September 2021, Rice made his European debut and scored his debut European goal in a 2–0 away victory over Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League. On 9 May 2022, Rice was named as Hammer of the Year for a second time. Following West Ham's Europa League campaign, which saw them reach the semi-final, Rice was named in the 2021–22 UEFA Europa League Team of the Year alongside teammate Craig Dawson. Following the retirement of Mark Noble in May 2022, Rice was named as captain of West Ham.
On 16 October 2022, Rice opened his goalscoring account for the season, scoring a curling effort from 22 yards (20 m) to secure West Ham a point in a 1–1 draw against Southampton. On 20 April 2023, Rice scored West Ham's third in a 4–1 win in the UEFA Europa Conference League against Belgian side Gent, carrying the ball for more than 50 metres (55 yd) before finishing past Gent goalkeeper Davy Roef, resulting in a goal labelled "perhaps the standout strike of Rice's career" by The Daily Telegraph. In May 2023, he was again named Hammer of the Year, for the 2022–23 season. On 8 June 2023, Rice was named as the Europa Conference League's player of the season by UEFA as Rice captained West Ham to their first major European trophy since 1965 after a 2–1 win against Fiorentina in the final a day prior. During the 2022–23 season, Rice won possession more than any other Premier League player. He also made the most interceptions of all Premier League players.
Rice left West Ham in July 2023, joining Arsenal. He played 245 games for West Ham scoring 15 goals. He is one of only three West Ham captains, along with Bobby Moore and Billy Bonds, to have captained the club to a major trophy. West Ham chairman, David Sullivan said that the club did not want to sell the player saying they wished to build the team around him but that Rice had made it clear he wanted to move on. Rice, himself said of the transfer, "Ultimately, though, it has only ever been about my ambition to play at the very highest level of the game."
On 15 July 2023, Rice signed for Premier League club Arsenal on a long-term contract. It was reported that the transfer fee was a club-record initial £100million, potentially rising by £5million in add-ons, making him the most expensive English player, equalling the previous record held by Jack Grealish. The structure of the transfer was given as West Ham receiving £50m immediately and a further £50m in the summer of 2024. They will also receive £1m every time Arsenal qualify for a place in the Champions League during his time at the club and £1m if he plays 60 per-cent of games in a season, with those payments capped at £5m. He made his debut on 6 August against Manchester City in the 2023 FA Community Shield, which Arsenal won 4–1 on penalties after a 1–1 draw. On 12 August, Rice started in Arsenal's opening match of the 2023–24 Premier League season, a 2–1 home win over Nottingham Forest. On 3 September, he scored his first goal for Arsenal, in stoppage time to grant his team a 2–1 lead against Manchester United in a match which ended in a 3–1 win.
Although born in London, Rice was eligible to play for Ireland as his grandparents are from Cork. On 19 March 2017, Rice was named Republic of Ireland U17 player of the year. On 23 May 2017, only days after his Premier League debut, Rice was named in the Republic of Ireland squad to play friendlies against Mexico and Uruguay and a World Cup qualifier at home to Austria. He made his senior debut on 23 March 2018 in a 1–0 defeat to Turkey.
In August 2018, Rice was omitted from the squad to play Wales by manager Martin O'Neill, who said that Rice was considering switching to play for England after being approached by them. By November 2018, having been omitted from three squads selected by O'Neill, Rice said he was no closer in deciding whether to play for Ireland or England. In December 2018, Rice met with new Ireland manager Mick McCarthy and his assistant, Robbie Keane. McCarthy said that Rice was a potential future captain of Ireland and that he would build the team around Rice should he decide to play for the country.
On 13 February 2019, Rice pledged his future to England. On 5 March, his change of allegiance was confirmed by FIFA. On 13 March, he was called up by England for their forthcoming UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying matches against the Czech Republic and Montenegro. He made his debut on 22 March as a 63rd-minute substitute against the Czech Republic at Wembley Stadium.
On 25 March 2019, England manager Gareth Southgate handed Rice his first start for the national side during a 5–1 victory over Montenegro. Following Rice's successful season, he was handed a place in the England squad for the 2019 UEFA Nations League Finals. In September 2019, Rice said that he had received online death threats after switching allegiance. He was the first player to play for both countries since Jack Reynolds in the 1890s. Rice was named in the England squad for UEFA Euro 2020. Rice played in all seven games for England at Euro 2020 where they finished runner-up in the final to Italy.
Rice was included in the England squad for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. He started all five matches as England reached the quarter-finals, losing 2–1 to France.
Regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders in the world, Rice is known for his athleticism, tackling and ball carrying ability.
Rice has been a close friend of Mason Mount since childhood from when they played together at Chelsea's academy.
In March 2019, Rice apologised for pro-Irish Republican Army comments he made on social media in 2015.
In August 2022, Rice confirmed the birth of his first child, a son, with long-term girlfriend, Lauren Fryer.
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||EFL Cup||Europe||Other||Total|
|West Ham United U23||2016–17||—||—||—||—||—||2||0||2||0|
|West Ham United||2016–17||Premier League||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||—||1||0|
|Republic of Ireland||2018||3||0|
|1||18 November 2020||Wembley Stadium, London, England||13||Iceland||1–0||4–0||2020–21 UEFA Nations League A|
|2||2 September 2021||Puskás Aréna, Budapest, Hungary||25||Hungary||4–0||4–0||2022 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|3||23 March 2023||Stadio Diego Armando Maradona, Naples, Italy||40||Italy||1–0||2–1||UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying|
West Ham United