West Ham starlet Ben Johnson desperate for Declan Rice to stay amid Chelsea rumours – and confirms England ace hasn’t ever had a pint

West Ham’s young star Ben Johnson has revealed the squad are desperate for Declan Rice to remain at the club.

The defensive midfielder impressed last season in the Premier League, however, his quality was given an even bigger spotlight at Euro 2020.

Rice was quality for England at Euro 2020

He started every game for England, leading the nation to their first major tournament final in 55 years. 

His quality is now well recognised thanks to improvements to his game and Rice is always putting in a shift, making interceptions and marking some of the best midfielders Europe has to offer out of the game. 

Hammers youngster Johnson emerged on the scene last season, and looks like another bright spark in the squad’s future. 

The versatile full-back made his debut in 2019 and featured 13 times in the Premier League last season, and he was full of praise for his teammate.

Johnson is already starring for West Ham in pre-season

Speaking exclusively to talkSPORT he said: “We know how good he is.

“I think he gets a lot of stick from other fans, who watch the games but don’t look at football subjectively, they don’t look at football how we do.”

The youngster continued: “We see the game differently, he’s a top, top player.”

Thomas Tuchel is reportedly a big fan of the Englishmen, and is ready to splash the cash to bring him to Chelsea.

Several top clubs are keeping an eye on Rice this transfer window
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A potential Rice and N’Golo Kante partnership would be fearsome and could be the key to a Premier League winning season for the Blues. 

His value has only increased though and West Ham will not sell the midfielder cheaply, with Manchester United and Man City also keen. 

On talk about Rice’s future, Johnson added: “Of course we want to keep him, and hopefully we can build our team around him.”

Football ability aside, the West Ham star is known to have good character, and at just 22 is already a leader for his club and country. 

Hammers fans will be keen to build around Rice if he stays
Getty – Pool

Johnson spoke about his personality, saying: “It’s a pleasure to have him on our team, he’s such a humble guy. 

“We’re just so proud of him and what he’s done, he’s inspired us and is pushing us to be at that top level.” 

If England were to have won Euro 2020, Rice promised he would have his first pint of beer to celebrate. 

Some fans didn’t believe he hadn’t had a drink but Johnson confirmed it when asked, saying: “He’s telling the truth, me neither, there’s a lot of youngsters that don’t drink.”