Monday, April 22, 2024

Rice voted London best’s player, believes Arsenal are more confident this year

Declan Rice’s fine performances for Arsenal and West Ham have seen him crowned Player of the Year at the 2023/24 London Football Awards.

The England international captained the Hammers to glory in the Uefa Europa Conference League in May – their first major trophy since 1980 – and then completed a £100 million move to Arsenal.

The 25-year-old has thrived at the Emirates, becoming a fulcrum of the Gunners’ midfield as Mikel Arteta’s side challenge for the title for a second successive season.

After picking up his award, Rice told Sky Sports that he’s pleased Arsenal have surged back into contention after poor results at the turn of the year.

“Last year, Arsenal were the best team in the league. They slipped up at the end and obviously, City always come on so strong. The word that they said now is that they can’t believe they lost the league obviously eight points ahead,” he said.

“This year, I feel everyone including the manager and the staff, everyone’s learned from their mistakes.

“Everyone’s stronger, they have more belief. If we go a goal down, there’s still that confidence and mental strength in us that we can push on and win games.

“Like I said, the league is so strong this year and anything can happen and there are 12 games to go. The main thing is, we’re right in it. Because at Christmas we had a little wobble, we lost two games on the bounce which wasn’t good.”

“We’ve won big games at home recently that have been really important. Come the end of the season, we’ll see who wins it. But to play in it [this team] has been an honour, to go head-to-head with the top teams every week, the pressure, it’s been so good, I know me and all the lads are really enjoying it. Long may it continue.”

This is the second time that Rice has won the top honour at the London Football Awards. He was also recognised as the capital’s best player in 2022. At last year’s awards, Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard won.

On that occasion, manager Mikel Arteta, winger Bukayo Saka and glove butler Aaron Ramsdale also picked up gongs for manager, young player and goalkeeper of the year respectively.

Clearly, the judges felt it was necessary to mix things up this time around with Ange Postecoglu, Cole Palmer and Guglielmo Vicario winning this time around.

Arteta and Saka were instead recognised by the Premier League for their incredible work in February. The manager is a shoo-in for the Manager of the Month award after Arsenal cruised to four league wins scoring 18 goals.

Saka’s was a key part of that run, netting six goals. He’s up for Player of the Month. Rice is also up for Goal of the Month for his long-range scorcher in the 6-0 win over his former club.

You can vote for the Arsenal contingent via the hyperlinks above.

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Johnny 4 Hats

Again, I hold my hands up. Wrong about Jorginho. Wrong about Declan. When the money was getting into the nine figures, I was starting to look around and think that we could buy two and a half great players for that. I had no idea that Rice was this good. He’s just utterly exceptional and always fit too. I firmly believe he’s the best CM in the world. (Rodri Shodri). Were he to go on the market this summer, he’d be worth easily £150m. Midas Mikel strikes again. I might as well just stop having opinions and follow Arteta’s vision… Read more »

A Different George

Just stay away from Guyana.

Mayor McCheese

Did you know that they drank grape-flavored “Flavor Aid” at Jonestown, not Kool Aid? Different brand. You have to feel for Kool Aid that somehow they got saddled with the saying “drink the Kool Aid.” But do you feel for them? Probably not. Who else remembers the amazing Kool Aid ads from the 80’s, when that giant pitcher would ruin your house? What a nightmare.

ThatgoonerguyGuy

Mayor McCheese, have you been drinking from the kool aid sir?

The Beast

And maybe avoid the kool-aid. 1 star reviews all round.

Henkamp

Lol. Good on him. Glad he plays for the Arsenal!

Although, I almost doubted the credibility of this award when I saw that Ange Postecoglu won the manager category. Hilarious.

Redbaron

Vicario winning for goalkeeping also creates doubts about credibility

Sean Johansen

Maybe the votes were cast at the beginning of September?

Santi’s Phonebox

Just gonna have a go, that’s who we are mate.

Compañero de clan Arroz

His club was expected to be in relegation zone, that’s why.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Great player, he deserves any success/awards that he receives.
Met him 2 days after he scored the winner vs Utd, his face lit up when he saw my Arsenal shirt and he genuinely looked humbled when he saw his name on the back. I actually love this guy, and yes I did tell him 🙊

Naked Cygan

One of the best signings we have made in decades. He will only get better.

Martin

He’s a magnificent signing but is he any better than Henry, Vieira and Bergkamp for example?

Smartinelli Sakadance

Declan and our team in general are incredible. But what are those awards for?

BLUEBERRY

Like most awards are for, maybe boosting the morale and show appreciation towards the players.

Stonks

Congratulations to Rice but what’s up with the “[name of city] award”? Weird…. Just waiting for the “conventry street award”.

Compañero de clan Arroz

If Porto gets a draw, we might be limited to the top four trophy again. To avoid this every year, some Walmart money must be spent on a prolific striker. Goal contribution has been massive in the last few games, I know, but if things get tough, we need the player who wouldn’t miss the only goal opportunity.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

“Top four trophy”
You sure you’re an Arsenal supporter? I don’t think you are.
Actually, we do have some of the thickest supporters at this club, so yeah, you probably are but I’d use that term loosely

Compañero de clan Arroz

Well, you know better than Arsene Wenger, I guess.

Domi

Boring and negative, that’s why you’re being downvoted so much. I believe in the boys and even if we do lose vs Porto, it would hurt like hell, as we are genuinely a better team. But it will not be for the lack of trying or the famed striker.

BLUEBERRY

Now now, we wouldn’t be having this discussion IF you had a brain. IF Russia decides to attack on all of the NATO we’d all in big problems, but you don’t worry about that, do you.
Just wait for the game and enjoy it. There are proper times for proper discussions. Now is none for what you started.

Martin

Yes we’ve missed a prolific in the last six games? 😂😂😂

Qwaliteee

Where are last summer’s ‘He’s Not Worth It’ brigade, now….?

Where are the naysayers who mocked me for insisting that it was vital that we signed him at all costs thus preventing him joining City into the bargain….?

Bargain being the operative word here….

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