Declan Rice’s contract at West Ham expires next year, so there’s a good chance he’ll be on the move this summer. So far, the race for his services is between Chelsea and Arsenal. Chelsea’s interest stems from the fact that they have long admired him and are the one team that has an appetite for spending big in the transfer market.
As for Arsenal, Mikel Arteta is thought to have identified the 24-year-old as his top summer target. Blues fans may be dreaming of a Rice-Fernandez midfield, but that, as per journalist Paul Brown, may not come true as he believes Chelsea would struggle to sign Rice, hence giving Arsenal a free run for the Hammer.
Brown told Give Me Sport: “Chelsea spent so much money in the last two transfer windows that I don’t think they would have the capacity, shall we say, to sign someone like Declan Rice without a huge fire sale of players simply because they might be in trouble with cost control rules in the Premier League. So, it’s possible that Arsenal get a clear run on Rice this summer, which would be incredible.”
Arsenal’s midfield has been effective this season, but with Rice, it could reach unexpected heights. Aside from Paul Brown’s revelation, Arsenal’s pursuit of Rice appears to be boosted, with indications that he does not trust David Moyes’ tactics.
Rice showed his distrust in Moyes’ tactics in West Ham’s 2-0 loss to Spurs, saying (via the Sun), “When you play with five at the back and the three, like we set up today, maybe our strikers felt a bit isolated when we got the ball up to them—they didn’t really have enough around them, not enough support.” If Rice wants a fresh start, Arsenal could be his club, and like Jorginho, Arteta’s tactics could blow him away.
WATCH – Mikel Arteta on Arsenal’s “complete domination” of Leicester, and Trossard’s and Martinelli’s contribution.
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