Declan Rice: We've had a great reaction
Declan Rice has hailed his West Ham United teammates for the way they have bounced back from their opening day disappointment against Newcastle United.
Sunday's superb 4-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers sealed the Hammers' first three-point haul of the season and was just reward for a performance full of attacking intent.
The east Londoners added a clinical edge to their creative thrust in the second half against Wolves, building on a similarly enterprising display against Arsenal the previous week.
For Rice, the performances over those two games have shown the character of his team and he was thrilled with how they applied themselves on Sunday.
"I stood here after the Newcastle game and said we couldn’t have played any more poorly, but now two weeks in a row we’ve had a massive reaction," he said.
"At Arsenal we should have won, and tonight we’ve won comfortably. We nullified their best players, we had a game plan. It was 4-0, but we missed some big chances in the first half and it could easily have been six or seven.
"I’m absolutely buzzing with the performance. Wolves are a great side, but tonight we showed that we are a great team."
Rice was also thrilled for David Moyes' backroom staff, with assistant Alan Irvine and coaches Paul Nevin, Kevin Nolan and Stuart Pearce stepping up as the manager had to take charge on Sunday from home, having tested positive for Covid-19 last week.
"Our manager tested positive for Covid, so the back room staff have taken over," he added. "I know they’ve been on Zoom calls all week and the manager’s been getting his points across to them, which they’ve been putting onto the training pitch.
"I couldn’t be any happier for the staff who were here tonight because they’ve stepped into the manager’s shoes brilliantly. It’s a collective effort and I’m delighted for the management tonight.
"I’m sure he’ll be buzzing. We’re in on Monday so he might join a little Zoom call with us."
Rice had praise for Jarrod Bowen too, with his two-goal haul showing exactly what the January signing can do on the biggest stage.
"He’s full of energy and spark," Rice explained. "When he comes inside on that left foot, he opens it up and bends it into the far corner and that’s what he’s good at.
"We see it every day in training and he’s turned that into goals on the pitch tonight so I’m delighted for him."