England international Declan Rice made a last-ditch clearance 12 minutes from time yesterday to preserve West Ham’s 2-1 lead over Tottenham.

Harry Kane’s driven cross from the right-hand side was dangerous but Rice made up the ground and cleared the ball away.

Alan Shearer was in the Match of the Day 2 studio last night and he was full of praise for what Rice did to keep his side in front.

Shearer tends to be quite a reserved pundit, but he did not hold back when it came to lauding the midfielder’s effort.

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
(Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Speaking over the top of footage of Rice’s 78th minute clearance, Shearer said, “This out of this world, as good as a goal.

“Look at him, he’s aware, he’s trying to fill in there at right-back. He then sniffs out the problem in the middle.

 

“Look at his determination to get in there, Rice, that is just unbelievable – what a clearance.”

Rice’s desire to get back in and preserve the lead summed up West Ham’s performance as a team yesterday.

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(KIRSTY WIGGLESWORTH/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

He’s their leader on the pitch and epitomises the attributes David Moyes wants to see from his side.

The top four is now a realistic ambition for the Hammers – but of course the job is far from done yet.

On this form, Rice will be a crucial player for England at the summer’s European Championship as well.

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