Exclusive: Darren Bent claims West Ham handed boost over senior star's transfer value

Darren Bent claims that Declan Rice controversially swapping the Republic of Ireland to play for England has caused his valuation to be raised at West Ham.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Spurs and England striker says that the 20-year-old’s decision to change allegiances on the international stage has resulted in him being rated at new heights, both by potential suitors and those in the stands.

Speaking on talkSPORT, former midfielder Jamie O’Hara said that he thought Rice had played well for both club and country but had become overrated by fans and the media, suggesting he is nowhere near the reported £100million asking price on his head.

Bent says that while the midfield enforcer has proven himself as a good player since his senior breakthrough, the controversial switch between nations has resulted in his value being lifted significantly.

Asked if he thought Bent told Football Insider: “He’s a very good player. What helped him was the whole England-Ireland thing, it really helped him.

“He’s got unbelievable talent, you can’t deny that, but at the same time, I do think he got elevated a bit. Declan Rice has done very good, he’s been a key reason as to why West Ham are doing as well as they are so I think he’s done well.

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Rice has been a mainstay for both England and the Hammers since breaking through as a promising young talent, picking up six caps for the Three Lions since his debut earlier in 2019.

This season has seen him play every minute of West Ham’s Premier League campaign with a total of 78 appearances for the east Londoners under his belt.

In other West Ham news, Danny Mills has suggested that off-pitch issues have played a part after a significant statement on one Hammers star’s future.