Search

West Ham’s Zabaleta vows to protect youngster Rice

PUBLISHED: 17:00 01 May 2018

Pablo Zabaleta, West Ham United

Pablo Zabaleta, West Ham United

PA Wire/PA Images

Hammers defenders stick behind young Hammer of the Year

Aaron Cresswell and Declan Rice v Raheem SterlingAaron Cresswell and Declan Rice v Raheem Sterling

West Ham veteran defender Pablo Zabaleta has vowed to help youngster Declan Rice as he goes through a crisis of confidence.

The young Hammer of the Year made a costly error at Arsenal last week and against Manchester City he played a part in the own goal and almost cost them another with a back pass.

But Zabaleta was keen to take some of the pressure off the 19-yeat-old Irishman.

“It was my own goal, not Declan’s,” he said magnanimously with the hint of a smile. “I was told it was Zabaleta for the record.”

Pablo Zabaleta, West Ham UnitedPablo Zabaleta, West Ham United

The 33-year-old Argentinian can certainly cope with the stigma of an own goal to his name, certainly more than the fragile Rice can at the moment.

And the wing-back is full of praise for the youngster.

“I have been very impressed with him this season. He came in as an 18-year-old and it has never been easy,” he said.

“But he has got the talent and that personality to become one of the greatest players for West Ham in the future.”

Strong words from a player who has seen it all and he knows that this is the time that the experienced players need to protect him.

“I am very pleased with him, but we need to support him,” said Zabaleta. “We all make mistakes, but he will learn from this and we need to help him through.

“I talk to him every day because I do really believe that he has been one of our best players this season.

“Now is a tough period. We are in a relegation battle and we need to do well and we cannot have more individual mistakes as they can cost points.

“He has been incredible apart from one or two mistakes.”

With the likes of Zabaleta on his side, chances are young Rice is going to come through this period stronger than ever.

Latest East London Sports News

18:00

Canning Town’s Wadi Camacho will start as a sizeable underdog when he faces Hackney’s Lawrence Okolie, the unbeaten British cruiserweight king, on Saturday.

14:00

Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson has heaped praise on player-manager Jamie Cureton for the job he’s doing at Bishop’s Stortford.

13:00

Leyton Orient head for Vanarama National League North outfit Telford United for the second leg of their Buildbase FA Trophy semi-final on Saturday.

Leyton Orient remain on course for a historic ‘Non-League Double’ but won’t have it all their own way in Shropshire

Yesterday, 17:00

British rivals to meet at the Copper Box Arena this weekend

Yesterday, 17:00

A round-up of the latest matches involving East London sides

Yesterday, 15:00

The pair have struck up a wonderful partnership this season and reunited it briefly last weekend

Yesterday, 13:00

The young boxer defeated Barton Hill’s Jimmy Gilheaney on points last weekend

PROMOTED CONTENT

It’s the debate fans across the UK are discussing - so where better to find out more about the iconic burger than behind the scenes in a local McDonald’s restaurant?

Are you a landlord looking for a fixed rental income, paid whether the property is empty or not? Steve Westley, general manager at estate agents Elliot Leigh, explains their Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it takes the stress out of letting your property.

Newsletter Sign Up

East London Advertiser regular newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read sport

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists