Paul Merson names Arsenal star who has taken team to another level | Football

Declan Rice scored in the 6-0 win at Sheffield United on Monday (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal legend Paul Merson feels Declan Rice has taken his old club to ‘another level’ this season as they look to land the Premier League title.

The Gunners signed the England international midfielder in a £105m deal from West Ham in the summer and he has impressed since his switch to the Emirates.

Rice has been in fine form in recent weeks, producing two goals and four assists across his last four games in the top-flight.

Arsenal will need Rice to keep performing as they attempt to register their first Premier League trophy in 20 years this term.

The Gunners pushed Manchester City all the way last season but a late capitulation saw them miss out.

They currently sit third in the table in the 2023-24 campaign with just 11 fixtures left – one point behind second-placed City and two points off leaders Liverpool.

‘Arsenal will go top on Saturday if they get the job done against Brentford, who have a lot of good players out, so they’ve got to put the pressure on the others,’ Merson told Sky Sports.

Arsenal FC v Newcastle United - Premier League

Mikel Arteta’s side host Brentford at the Emirates on Saturday (Picture: Getty)

‘They are so different to last season because Declan Rice has taken them to another level.

‘He’s up there with Rodri and that’s why Man City and Arsenal have great defences. They are so disciplined it’s unbelievable.

‘Arsenal have won seven in a row now and that break they had has helped them, but when you look back at their results, I hope the week when Fulham and West Ham beat them isn’t what costs them.

‘They’ve taken their goal difference to another level in the last few weeks though. They were behind and now they’ve almost got an extra point with it. That could be massive.

‘However, the acid test is going to be at Man City on March 31. We’ll see how far Arsenal have come then.

‘But you’ve got to keep on winning these games to make sure you get there and that’s what they’re doing.’


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