Mikel Arteta told to give Declan Rice new Arsenal role to unlock 'top class' £105m midfielder


Former Arsenal right-back Lauren has urged Mikel Arteta to change Declan Rice's role in the team to unlock the best out of the midfielder. The England international made the £105million switch to the Emirates Stadium over the summer transfer window, breaking the club-record fee for a signing.

Rice has often played in the deeper midfield role when called upon, though at times has pushed further forward when Thomas Partey has inverted to the base of the midfield from right-back. The highlight so far will certainly be his late goal against Manchester United before the international break.

The 24-year-old had an impressive performance, often breaking up counter attacks while looking to progress the ball himself. However, when the game was into injury time and the scoreline was level, Rice managed to find some space at the back post from a corner and found the back of the net with his following strike.

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A trip with the England squad on international break came after, but a return to club action is on the horizon for another month or so. With that in mind, Arteta has been urged to transform Rice from his more reserved role to that of a player that will operate box-to-box.

Former Arsenal star Lauren told the Daily Mail: "He's a player that has already been playing at the highest level with England and with West Ham. He's young, but he already has a lot of experience. His performances since the beginning of the season are not a surprise, he's a top class player. I'm not surprised to see him performing so well."

"He should be playing more of a box-to-box role to be closer to the strikers," he adds when discussing the role of Rice. "He's got a good shot from outside the box, he's got the quality to pick the final pass and he and attacks well the space in the final third."

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