By Alex McLeish

27th Jul, 2021 | 2:12pm

Ex-manager: This is what Rice will think about quitting West Ham after source's update

Alex McLeish has claimed the “smart money” is on Declan Rice leaving West Ham this summer despite plans for a new blockbuster contract.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Scotland manager suggested long-time admirers Chelsea have the financial clout to prise the 22-year-old from the London Stadium.

As revealed by Football Insider last week (July 22nd), West Ham are preparing to offer a “mega” contract package to tie him down.

Rice’s current terms expire in 2024.

However, a West Ham source told this site that the Irons’ star man has had his “head turned” over a potential move while on England duty.

Chelsea and Manchester United are among the midfielder’s top suitors ahead of next season.

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As such, McLeish admitted the West Ham star would be considering his future as it is a “short career”.

“The smart money is probably on him moving,” McLeish told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge.

“Nowadays, I think more and more, the discussions, talks, are it’s a short career.

“It’s difficult to hit a moving target, as they used to say in my times when you moved as a manager. That’s the same for footballers.

“It’s not that he’s a moving target but he can go to a Champions League-winning club and try and enhance them even more so they can win another Champions League.

“That is their ambitions and they’ve got the capabilities to do that financially.”

Rice left Chelsea’s academy as a 14-year-old and was signed up by West Ham.

He has played 145 times for the Irons and has 24 caps for England under his belt.

In other news, West Ham tipped to raid Premier League giants for defender after update via The Athletic.