Sources: Man City now to push Arsenal all the way for Declan Rice deal in new twist
Man City and Chelsea are planning to push Arsenal all the way in the race to sign West Ham star Declan Rice this summer, sources have told Football Insider.
This site revealed on Thursday (23 February) that the battle for the 24-year-old’s signature is “opening up” for the Gunners.
But Man City and Chelsea remain keen on signing the Irons captain in the off-season – with Liverpool also ready to pounce if he becomes available.
However, it is understood that missing out on Champions League qualification will make a potential move a lot harder to complete – but is not a deal breaker.
League leaders Arsenal and second-place Man City look set to finish in the top four – but Liverpool and Chelsea are seven and 11 points adrift respectively.
Rice is widely expected to leave West Ham in the off-season when he will have just 12 months left on his contract at the London Stadium.
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It is believed that the Irons are unwilling to let the midfielder move into the final months of his contract – as he is able to agree a free transfer in January 2024.
Sources with knowledge of Rice’s situation have revealed that West Ham may be able to command a fee of £70-80million for their most saleable asset.
Rice’s destination could also depend on the availability of Jude Bellingham this summer.
His fellow England midfielder is expected to exit Borussia Dortmund at the end of the season and has been linked with a number of top Premier League sides.
Rice, who starred for the Three Lions at last year’s (2022) World Cup, has played every minute in every Premier League match for West Ham this term.
The Irons sit 18th in the table – one point from safety.
In other news, Football Insider updates with Man City in line to bank £45m amid new behind-the-scenes twist.