Declan Rice has been crowned Betway Hammer of the Year for 2022/23 by West Ham United supporters.
The Claret and Blue Army voted their captain as their player of the season after the 24-year-old led the Irons to the UEFA Europa Conference League final and Premier League safety.
Rice completes a hat-trick by winning the prestigious and historic accolade for a third time, matching the achievement of Sir Geoff Hurst, Julian Dicks, Alvin Martin and Scott Parker. Only Sir Trevor Brooking (five), Billy Bonds and Bobby Moore (four) have won the award on more occasions.
The No41 has had another impressive campaign, making 48 appearances across all competitions, scoring four goals and assisting four more.
Rice has played nearly 4,000 minutes of football for the Hammers and made more passes and tackles than any other West Ham player.
Tens of thousands of votes were cast by fans, with Rice finishing first ahead of Algeria winger Saïd Benrahma in second and Morocco centre-back Nayef Aguerd in third.
The skipper reiterated his love for the Claret and Blue Army before accepting the award from Betway’s Global Head of Communications and PR Chad Yeomans before kick-off in Sunday’s Premier League fixture with Leeds United at London Stadium.
“Since I’ve come into the team, the fans have been so passionate,” said Rice. “They wear their hearts on their sleeves, and in a way they’re like the players, really. As fans, they bring so much energy. They’ve been through so many ups and downs, but we’ve definitely had more ups in the last three years than we’ve ever had in my time in the team. They have been a massive positive and you felt their energy as well.
“In the semi-final [against AZ Alkmaar] and against Manchester United, the place was rocking. I’ve said it before, even away from home, they don't stop singing. Some of the away journeys they've had this year, to go away and spend their money to come and watch us, to miss work and things like that, we really do appreciate it. And I know I definitely tried to tell them that as much as possible, so they're amazing.”
Everyone at West Ham United would like to congratulate Declan on being crowned Betway Hammer of the Year for 2022/23.