“He was a brilliant member of the team. He led the team brilliantly well. He conducted himself impeccably as a West Ham captain and as a player.
“The most important thing was that he gave 100 per cent in every game, even though we sort of knew he probably wasn’t going to stay at West Ham. So all credit to him. He conducted himself brilliantly well and for that alone he deserves to be cheered.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing Dec again. I’ve not seen him since he left. I don’t know if I want him to play, but I hope he’s there.”
Arteta also said he thought Rice would receive a warm reception: “I would say so and I hope so,” Arteta said. “Especially because every time you hear him talk about West Ham and what they did for him and everybody at the club, he cannot speak any more highly. Hopefully, it will be the same way towards him.
“It would be his first time back there at his old club and a beautiful moment for him. I think it’s beautiful, I had the experience to do it a few times and then you really see what they think of you and what you left at that club.
“It’s really good way to measure your experience and the reality of your reality with the people who shared those moments with you.”
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