Declan Rice made an impression against the Gunners last season, and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta praised the midfield player and said he was “mad to sign.”

Rice was signed by Arsenal for £105 million last summer from West Ham United.

Thursday’s Premier League match between Arsenal and West Ham will likely pit Rice against his former club.

“When they put the price-tag you have to carry that and it is not easy,” Arteta said at his pre-match press conference.

“He is a really humble guy and the way that he wants to learn and take positive criticism is really powerful.

“I felt it when I played against him, that is why I was mad to sign him. You get a feeling about players and I wanted him to be part of our team.

“He has shown that he has an eye for goals when he is in the opponent’s box he is a real threat. That is something that can be developed.

“His leadership skills, the way that he will naturally grow in the team and club in the years to come, there is much more from him.”

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