Danny Murphy has shared his views on what he expects from new Arsenal signing Declan Rice this season.

Arsenal paid a club-record £105 million to prise Declan Rice away from West Ham United this summer. The midfielder will play a key role for Mikel Arteta’s side throughout the upcoming campaign, and is likely to be deployed in a variety of tactical roles.

Former Fulham midfielder and pundit Danny Murphy certainly believes that Rice will have the opportunity to show a different side to his game in the Premier League this season.

Having been largely confined to a defensively-minded role for the Hammers, Arteta may well be planning to unleash the 24-year-old higher up the pitch on a more regular basis. The 43-cap England man will certainly get chances to prove his attacking qualities in the ‘left-eight’ midfield position recently vacated by Granit Xhaka.

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Murphy believes Rice will take his game to a new level if given this freedom. Writing for the Daily Mail, the ex-Liverpool man said, “we are yet to see the best of Declan Rice. As good as he was at West Ham, he was asked to do so much defensive work we rarely had the chance to appreciate just how good he is on the ball. I’ve spoken to Rice and he’s excited for that too. He wants to be more creative, scoring goals, setting them up because he knows he’s capable of doing that too.”

Arsenal Unveil New Signing Declan Rice
Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Rice takes Arsenal closer to the ultimate aim

Rice may take some time to adapt to playing in Arteta’s system, but the Gunners are confident they have an excellent player on their hands. They were comfortable with parting with such a huge fee in exchange for his services because they believe he can have an impact at both ends of the pitch.

If Arsenal are to go one step better than last season, and actually beat Manchester City to the Premier League title this time around, then Rice represents the kind of upgrade the starting XI needed.

Murphy believes that “Rice on his own isn’t enough for Arsenal to bridge the gap to Man City but he’s part of the puzzle for Mikel Arteta.” There is a definite sense that the Gunners are heading in the right direction and are well placed to bring silverware to the Emirates Stadium this year.

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