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Fans, pundit heap praises on Arsenal star after another monstrous performance

Fans and Paul Merson heaped praises on phenomenal Arsenal star after another monstrous display in the Championns League

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Kai Havertz
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Arsenal fans and pundits alike showered Declan Rice with accolades after the midfielder exhibited his exceptional defensive prowess in the Gunners’ resounding 6-0 triumph over Lens in the Champions League clash on Wednesday.

The comprehensive victory, solidifying Arsenal’s position atop Group B, saw goals from Kai Havertz, Gabriel Jesus, Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, Martin Odegaard, and Jorginho. However, it was Rice’s defensive mastery that captivated spectators, notably his standout double tackle that disrupted Lens’ attacking threat in the second half.

Rice’s display involved a skillful interception from Lens defender Kevin Danso followed by a swift and precise diving challenge that dispossessed Neil El Aynaoui, drawing admiration from Arsenal supporters across social media platforms.

One fan exclaimed, ‘Declan is out of this world man,’ while another asserted, ‘That’s world-class idgaf what anyone says…Rice is Ridiculous.’ Arsenal faithful expressed confidence in Rice’s impact, with one fan even suggesting that his addition could bolster the team’s chances of surpassing Chelsea’s record for the fewest goals conceded in a season.

READ MORE: Gabriel Jesus makes bold Champions League statement after another spectacular display

Amidst the widespread praise, Arsenal legend Paul Merson emphasised Rice’s pivotal role, urging Mikel Arteta to protect the midfielder, considering him the standout performer ‘by a million miles’ in the current campaign.

Rice’s introduction to the Champions League stage came following his summer transfer from West Ham United, marking a significant step in his career. Despite limited European experience, his seamless adaptation to Arsenal’s setup has not gone unnoticed, earning commendation for his commanding presence in midfield.

Arteta, delighted with Rice’s contributions, recognised his important role in dictating Arsenal’s rhythm against Lens. The 24-year-old showcased his ability to regain possession and orchestrate play, drawing applause from the crowd as he was substituted after 75 minutes, a move intended to manage his workload ahead of Arsenal’s upcoming Premier League fixture against Wolves.

Having started in all of Arsenal’s Premier League and Champions League matches since his arrival, Rice’s consistent performances have caught the eye of pundits and fans alike, prompting Merson’s plea for Arteta to preserve his form by handling his game time delicately.

Merson said, “He’s been their best player by a million miles this season. [Arteta has] got to wrap him up in cotton wool.” The sentiment echoed by Merson reflects the widespread belief in Rice’s key role in Arsenal’s quest for success, urging caution to preserve the midfielder’s standout contributions on the field.

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