Declan Rice to Captain England on 50th Appearance Against Belgium

Declan Rice is set to lead England as captain on his 50th appearance for the national team in Tuesday night’s friendly against Belgium at Wembley Stadium. The 25-year-old Arsenal midfielder expressed his excitement, describing the occasion as a “pinch-me” moment and a great honor.

Rice, who made his England debut in 2019, has become a key figure for the Three Lions and has played a significant role in their recent successes, including reaching the final of the 2020 European Championship and the quarter-finals of the 2022 World Cup.

Reflecting on his journey with the national team, Rice acknowledged his growth as both a player and a person since joining the squad. He expressed gratitude for the opportunity to represent England in major tournaments and emphasized his enjoyment of every moment on the pitch.

England manager Gareth Southgate faces challenges due to several injuries within the squad, with key players such as Harry Kane and Kyle Walker unavailable for the match against Belgium. Despite the setbacks, Southgate remains focused on the opportunities for other players to step up and make their mark.

Among those expected to feature are forward Ivan Toney, who receives his first England call-up since serving a suspension, and midfielder Jude Bellingham, who is fit after experiencing cramp in the previous match against Brazil.

Additionally, England will wear nameless shirts in the second half of the game as part of a partnership with the Alzheimer’s Society International, aiming to raise awareness of dementia and its impact on memory loss.

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