Bilic hints at West Ham game time for Irish defender

Declan Rice (19) could play in the club's final game of the season

Declan Rice, West Ham

Coventry City's Daniel Agyei and West Ham United U21's Declan Rice. Paul Harding/EMPICS Sport

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic has hinted that Irish defender Declan Rice could start the club's final game of the Premier League season at Burnley on Sunday.

The 18 year old has been capped by the Ireland under-16s and under-19s, as well as getting a call up to the under-21s and is a member of the Hammers' youth ranks, featuring for the club's under-23s where he has made 20 appearances this season.

He was named as the under-23s captain at the age of 17 and is highly rated by the club and by senior manager Bilic who suggests he has a "bright future".

"We’re going to see. We have a game on Sunday and we have many injuries, but he’s one of them that may play. He’s in the squad," said Bilic on the official West Ham website.

"Declan is very good for his age. He is extremely good, he is mature and it’s all based on the training and he plays very well for the Under-23s. He has a bright future in him and it’s all down to him.

"He played a couple of games in the pre-season when we went to the States and we were missing a few players. I can see him being a really good player."

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