By Noel Whelan

10th Sep, 2021 | 4:00pm

West Ham tipped to strike mega-money Rice deal amid 'bidding war' - pundit

Noel Whelan has suggested West Ham could net nearly £100million for Declan Rice amid reported interest from Manchester United and Liverpool.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Leeds striker touted a potential “bidding war” for the 22-year-old.

ESPN reported on Monday (September 6th) Manchester United are targeting Rice ahead of next summer’s window.

Eurosport claim (7th September) Manchester City and Liverpool could join the fight for the defensive midfielder’s signing next summer.

West Ham reportedly value the England star at £100million.

The report claims that price tag put Chelsea off making a move this summer.

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However, Whelan suggested a three-way transfer battle could help the Irons get what they want.

“I think it’s one of these that might come around into the season,” Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.

“Right now, West Ham need to keep him. They’re in Europe, they want to finish as high in the Premier League as they possibly can to stay in Europe.

“They’ve started off the season really well, they look a fantastic team to watch, strength in depth in the right areas. They’re exciting, attacking and they’ve already strengthened at the back to make it more solid as well.

“I think you’re going to be selling any kind of player, to have the three big clubs in a bidding war that want your player, I’m sure you’ll a handsome payback out of it come the end of the season.

“That’s if Declan Rice wants to leave. I know he wants to go on and play in the Champions League.

“But I think this season he is fully focused on helping West Ham.

“He seems professional. A very level headed young man and a nice person to have in and around your changing room.

“He’ll respect the club that he is at right now. Come the end of the season, if he has another good successful one, which I’m sure he will, there’ll be chats.

“We’ve already had a couple of big £100million bids this year. There was Harry Kane, Grealish going as well. You’re probably talking pushing up towards that number.”

In other news, Football Insider can reveal David Moyes planning on axing West Ham “untouchable”.