David Moyes has admitted that Declan Rice made West Ham worse by forcing his former manager’s hand.

While it may seem like a stretch, you’d struggle to think of a better player for West Ham in recent memory than Declan Rice. For a number of years, he was simply world-class and he’s finally getting the plaudits he deserves now he’s at Arsenal.

He captained the Hammers to their first trophy in over 40 years and he’s been nothing but respectful of his former club since leaving.

Arguably the only person who’s had more of an impact in that time is David Moyes, who will go down as one the club’s greatest managers of all time. However, the Scotsman has claimed that he potentially could have done even better if it wasn’t for Rice’s determination to prove the doubters wrong.

While this may sound strange at first, Moyes explained that it was down to this that he was played in a more advanced position which had a negative impact on the rest of the team.

“He wanted to get forward more in the second year,” Moyes stated. “The first year together when we had Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice, Tomas was the one making the box and scoring the goals.”

“Declan was sitting. I think Declan felt, and there was a lot getting said, Declan Rice is not going to be that good if he can’t score a goal, if he can’t really get forward. And I think Declan got a wee bit hurt by that as well. And actually, it didn’t help the balance as well with the team, because Tomas ended up having to sit a little bit more and he wasn’t as good at what Declan could do.”

“And Declan at the time wasn’t scoring quite enough, he was getting a few, but I think he wanted to prove to everybody how good he could be at the other side as well. I think he’s better as a six.”

Obviously, it is not great to hear that the then captain of the club was more worried about how he appeared to the media rather than what was best for West Ham. Ultimately though, you do have to question why Moyes allowed this to happen? As the gaffer, he should have put his foot down and explained that the team came first – it’s just bizarre that he allowed this to continue after he saw it didn’t work.