Declan Rice transfer latest as Arsenal make huge breakthrough over Man United
Arsenal, Chelsea, and Manchester United are consistently being associated with a potential summer transfer for Declan Rice, the captain of West Ham. As the current season concludes, Rice will have only 12 months left on his contract with West Ham, although there is an option for the club to extend it by another year.
However, Rice has openly expressed his ambition to compete in the UEFA Champions League in the near future.
Due to their qualification for Europe’s top competition next season, both Arsenal and Manchester United may have an advantage over Chelsea in the pursuit of Declan Rice from West Ham.
However, the transfer saga surrounding Rice is expected to have many unpredictable developments in the future. To provide a comprehensive overview of his future, football.london has summarized all the relevant information below.
According to the Mirror, Arsenal has made significant progress in their pursuit of Declan Rice from West Ham.
The midfielder has reportedly expressed a preference for joining Arsenal, which is a major boost for the Gunners. However, they still face competition from other clubs such as Chelsea and Manchester United in their quest to secure his signature.
Ten Hag’s acceptance
According to The Sun, Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has reportedly come to terms with the likelihood that Declan Rice will join Arsenal instead of the Red Devils.
It is suggested that Ten Hag has accepted the fact that securing a deal for Rice is unlikely, as the midfielder is said to prefer a move to Arsenal. As an alternative, Ten Hag is considering making a move for Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount instead.
Bidding war sparked
According to the Daily Mail, United have officially joined the race to sign Rice, with a bidding war potentially on the horizon – something that West Ham hoped would happen.
It is claimed that Arsenal, who are most advanced in their interest of the England international, are likely to open talks with the Hammers regarding a £90 million deal for Rice. However, this is said to have fallen more than £10 million short of West Ham’s valuation of the player.
West Ham asking price claim
Transfer expert Ben Jacobs has claimed that West Ham may have to settle for less than their asking price when it comes to selling Arsenal target Rice this summer.
“With Declan Rice, a lot of the prep is being done internally at Arsenal as they start to understand what they may need to get Rice and what is more gamesmanship on the West Ham side,” Jacobs told Give Me Sport.
“So, this British transfer record number and David Moyes has even said as large as £120m is, in my opinion, unrealistic from West Ham. Comparing Rice to Enzo Fernandez is not necessarily apt. Of course, if we’re comparing footballer to footballer, you can make a comparison. But the situation with Enzo was that he had a sky-high release clause, and Chelsea desperately wanted him. Whereas with Declan Rice, he’s got one year plus a one-year extension left on the contract.
“That affects the valuation, as does Declan Rice wanting to leave West Ham. After being extremely firm on keeping him last summer, there has always been an understanding that Rice could depart for the right opportunity, and West Ham have been resigned in many ways to losing Rice.”
Arsenal’s strong relations with West Ham put them in a strong position when it comes to trying to sign Rice this summer, according to transfer guru David Ornstein.
Speaking to NBC Sports, Ornstein said: “Declan Rice is the apple of their eye. They went for him in the January window, but they shifted to Moises Caicedo.
“It doesn’t surprise me that they’ve come back for Rice and he’s the focus of their attention now. I think West Ham would trade if the price was right, but that’s a big if.
“Arsenal look to be in a strong position, as far as I know they have good relations with West Ham, but the numbers will be high club-to-club and with the player as well.”
Bayern enter race
German transfer guru Florian Plettenberg has confirmed that Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel is extremely keen to prise Rice away from the London Stadium this summer. Writing on Twitter, Plettenburg said: “News #Rice: He‘s one of the desired players of #Tuchel confirmed. Bayern bosses are also convinced that he’s the perfect defensive midfielder for Bayern.
“(Arrow emoji) There were talks with the players management (Arrow emoji) Tuchel is 100 % involved. But: Bayern is aware of the fact that @Arsenal is pushing for him. His price: Around £70m. Very difficult transfer target. @SkySportDE.”
Arsenal are expected to lodge a structured £90m offer for Rice but West Ham want considerably more for their captain, according to the Daily Mail.
Their report claims that the Hammers believe that Manchester United are more likely to meet their demands for the 24-year-old. It is said that if the Gunners miss out on a deal for Rice, they will look to sign one of Ruben Neves, Martin Zubimendi or Moises Caicedo instead.
West Ham make triple Arsenal request
According to FootballTransfers, senior figures at West Ham want a lump sum up front for Rice, which is said to be between £85million and £95m. However, the report states that the Hammers boss wants a part-exchange swap deal to immediately strengthen his side.
FootballTransfers claim that the Arsenal players Moyes has his eye on are Reiss Nelson, Folarin Balogun and Albert Sambi-Lokonga. Interestingly, the former sees his contract with the Gunners expire at the end of next month and he’ll soon be available for free.
Chelsea suffer setback
Chelsea had Declan Rice at the top of their list of transfer targets this summer – but things have happened behind the scenes that ‘did not go down very well with him and his family’, according to @LondonsFirst_ – backed up by Simon Phillips.
Offer expected in June
According to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Arsenal want to sign two midfielders and are preparing an official offer for Rice, which is expected to be submitted in June.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Romano said: “Arsenal are now preparing and thinking of the first bid for Declan Rice. It is not submitted yet but they are preparing that bid internally, it means that they are waiting to understand how much West Ham want in order to submit the first proposal.”
He added: “The idea is in June, to submit an official proposal for Declan Rice.”
Arsenal could already be making room for Rice in the midfield, with the news that Granit Xhaka looks set to leave the club.
football.london understands the Gunners star is in advanced talks over a move to Bayer Leverkusen, with a deal set at around £13million.
Arsenal prepare offer
According to the Telegraph, Arsenal are putting together an offer worth a club-record £92million for Rice, although West Ham want as much as possible of that sum paid up front.
It is also claimed that the Gunners remain confident that they can agree a deal with the Hammers despite interest from Manchester United.
West Ham decision
West Ham have seemingly set the exact date they would be willing to enter negotiations to sell star man Declan Rice this summer, according to a new report.
The Hammers are almost mathematically safe from relegation which could see the club increase their asking price for the 24-year-old.
Although there remains not much left to play for in their Premier League campaign, David Moyes’s side are in the Europa Conference League semi-final. As per the Evening Standard, West Ham plan to delay talks for Rice until their European adventure is over which could be as late as June 7 which is when the final is set to take place.
A 2-1 first leg win against AZ Alkmaar has put the Hammers in control of the tie with the second leg in the Netherlands tonight.
Mega price tag set
West Ham have slapped a £120million price tag on Rice, as per Sky Sports. It is claimed that the Hammers could also accept an offer of £100million plus a player for the England international, with his most likely destination said to be Arsenal.
The report also added that Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool have all shown interest in the tough-tackling midfielder as well.
Matteo Guendouzi impact
According to The Athletic, West Ham are interested in signing Marseille star and former Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi as a possible replacement for Rice. The Gunners, Newcastle and Manchester United are said to be keen to prise the 24-year-old away from east London this summer, with the Hammers eyeing up Guendouzi as a potential successor.
The Frenchman’s time at the Emirates Stadium ended on a sour note after he fell out with Arteta towards the end of the 2019/20 campaign.
Price stumbling block
According to the Daily Mail, Rice is open to joining the Gunners now they have qualified for next season’s Champions League, although it is claimed that West Ham’s £100million valuation of their star player may prove to be a stumbling block.
Arsenal’s current transfer record is the £72million they paid for Nicolas Pepe back in the summer of 2019, a move that ultimately failed to meet expectations. The most they have spent on a player during Arteta’s time as manager is the £50 million they shelled out for defender Ben White two years ago.
White has undoubtedly been a success at the Emirates Stadium, establishing himself as one of the most consistent defenders in the Premier League this season.
Mikel Arteta plans face-to-face talks
Mikel Arteta wants to hold talks with Declan Rice as soon as the season ends, according to The Mirror. The Arsenal boss is increasingly confident he can land the West Ham midfielder despite the Gunners’ faltering title bid.
The report adds that Arsenal’s head coach, who used to play in midfield himself, believes he can help convince the £100million-rated star to move to the Emirates Stadium ahead of Premier League rival interest. Arteta will urge the Gunners to make an official approach once the season has ended to try to tee up a huge transfer when the window opens in June.
According to the Evening Standard, there is ‘optimism’ at the Emirates Stadium that Arsenal will sign the midfielder ahead of the likes of Chelsea and United. However, the report goes on to suggest that the recent valuations of Enzo Fernandez, Jude Bellingham and Moises Caicedo will be used as a benchmark when deciding a price tag for the Hammers skipper.
Jack Wilshere message
Arsenal Under-18s head coach Jack Wilshere has sent a tongue-in-cheek message on Instagram to West Ham United captain Declan Rice.
The Hammers secured a 4-0 victory over Nottingham Forest on Saturday afternoon, with Rice netting his first Premier League goal of the season in the process. Wilshere then took to social media after the match, commenting “finally” on the midfielder’s Instagram post, presumably joking about the England international’s lack of goals this term.
The pair played alongside each other at West Ham for two years before Wilshere eventually left east London in 2020 and they could be reunited at the Emirates Stadium soon enough if Arsenal are able to sign Rice this summer. football.london understands that the 24-year-old is the north Londoners’ primary transfer target ahead of the summer window.
Despite the promising signs ahead of the summer, the north Londoners are well behind the likes of Liverpool, City and United when it comes to pursuing a deal for Jude Bellingham. According to The Athletic, the Gunners are admirers of the 19-year-old but his £150million price tag is likely to be just out of their price range as they search for a new central midfielder this summer.
This may be one reason why sporting director Edu Gaspar is prioritising a move for Rice. The 24-year-old’s contract with the Hammers is set to expire in 2024 meaning this summer represents the last opportunity for West Ham to receive a significant transfer fee for the midfielder – who has rejected approaches from the club regarding signing a new deal to stay at the London Stadium.
According to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Arsenal recently held a transfer meeting where a summer move for Rice was heavily discussed. Speaking about the Gunners’ failed move for Chelsea new-boy Mykhailo Mudryk the House of Champions YouTube channel, Romano said: “I’m told that right after the Mudryk story, Arsenal had a meeting.
“A meeting planning for the present – (Leandro) Trossard, (Jakub) Kiwior and more – and the future. And in that meeting, Declan Rice was mentioned also as a possibility, a player they really like.”
Real Madrid rejection
Spanish outlet Nacional, via Football365, have reported that Rice has rejected interest from Spanish side Real Madrid, telling the La Liga giants that he has already given ‘his word’ to Arsenal regarding a summer move.
Their report also claims that the England international, who is now into the final 18 months of his contract with the Hammers, will become the north London club’s most expensive signing in their history, with a deal likely to cost more than the £72million they paid for Ivorian winger Nicolas Pepe back in 2019.
As per The Guardian, Rice is currently leaning towards a move to the Gunners because of the prospect of playing for head coach Mikel Arteta. The north London outfit are said to have made Rice their primary summer target, with the West Ham captain seen as the perfect candidate to challenge first-choice holding midfielder Thomas Partey and box-to-box maestro Granit Xhaka.
The idea of working under Arteta also appeals to Rice and the Spaniard has done a stellar job this season, guiding his side to the top of the table, five points ahead of second-placed Manchester City, who have played a game more than their title rivals.
Rice drops Arsenal transfer hints to teammates
According to CBS Sports, Rice has been speaking of Arsenal in glowing terms to his teammates, pronouncing himself stunned with the progress the north London side has made. The English midfielder labelled the Gunners as “a top team” and admitted Arsenal are “coached incredibly well” after West Ham’s 3-1 defeat at the Emirates Stadium on Boxing Day.
Rice and his representatives have been planning for a move away for the Hammers, who are currently battling against relegation from the Premier League, with his contract set to expire next summer. The 24-year-old has rejected a new deal at the London Stadium on numerous occasions as looks to finally seal a move away from West Ham.
football.london understands that Rice is Arsenal’s priority target for the summer transfer window.
Despite bringing experienced no.6 Jorginho to the club during the January window, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is keen to bolster his midfield options at the end of the current window.
Champions League dream
While on World Cup duty with England, Rice admitted that he wants to play in the Champions League, further hinting at a transfer move: “One hundred per cent I want to play in the Champions League. For the last two or three years I’ve been saying that.
“I’ve been playing consistently well for my club and I feel like I really want to keep pushing. I see my friends here who are playing Champions League and for big trophies. You only get one career and at the end you want to look back at what you’ve won and the biggest games you’ve played in.”
Declan Rice transfer latest as Arsenal make huge breakthrough over Man United