The Hammers’ clash with Watford last weekend was exactly 15-years since Noble had made his West Ham debut and in that time he has racked up 468 appearances for the club.
In an interview with Four Four Two, Rice was asked if he could envision himself staying at the Hammers as long as Noble had, and he replied by saying that he could.
“Yeah,” said Rice (page 101 of issue 304 of Four Four Two).
“I’ve signed a contract here for the next few years and am looking forward to playing this season and the season beyond, so we’ll just see where it goes.”
While Rice clearly tries to play down committing himself to the Hammers for the rest of his days, as he ends up saying we’ll see how it goes, his first instinct was to say yes when asked if he could match Noble’s stay. This is no doubt exciting news for the Hammers as it shows that the 20-year-old isn’t about to pack his bags and leave the London Stadium. Rice has featured in all of the Hammers’ three league games so far and has had mixed success. The Hammers midfielder has averaged a rating of 6.72 across his three display on WhoScored and has maintained a respectable pass completion rate of 82.6%. While Rice is yet to contribute an assist or a goal to the Hammers’ cause this season, though that’s not really his job, he has pulled his weight defensively. The midfield enforcer has already registered nine tackles, winning 56% of them, made two clearances and registered six interceptions (Source: Premier League). Hopefully, Rice is able to build on those numbers as the season goes on, as another successful campaign in the Premier League will simply prove what a talent he is.