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Declan Rice to Arsenal latest: How close is a transfer for the West Ham star?
Declan Rice has been a leading transfer target for Arsenal since the January transfer window, when it emerged that the West Ham and England star wants to complete a sensational move to the Emirates Stadium.
Rice has long been linked with Chelsea, where he was a member of the academy squad, and Manchester United, with the Gunners’ strong 2022/23 campaign bringing them firmly into the picture for the highly rated 24-year-old.
FootballTransfers’ Steve Kay, who was the first to break the news, explains the current status of the move.
In essence, there has not been a great deal of movement since January but Arsenal remain well positioned to capture Rice.
Mikel Arteta has held multiple conversations with the player and his representatives, with the player making clear that he is interested in a move.
However, there has been nothing as in depth as personal terms discussed.
West Ham aware of Rice’s Arsenal talks
West Ham, meanwhile, have been kept aware of the situation and know that discussions have gone on. There has, equally, been no significant talks between the clubs, with the Hammers refusing to discuss any possible transfer fee until the season is over.
Of course, Rice’s valuation is liable to hinge on West Ham’s situation next season. David Moyes’ men have put themselves in a healthier position to avoid relegation with only one defeat in their last four, yet just three points above the drop zone, they are far from safe.
Rice, meanwhile, is only under contract until 2024, meaning that West Ham’s negotiating position over the England star is not as healthy as it once was. Previously, they have boasted that he could move in excess of €100 million, yet the strength of their position will be dictated by the demand for the player.
Manchester United and Chelsea, for example, are known to be looking at Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham, although the former Birmingham player has reportedly spurned the Blues.
Arsenal, then, are in pole position for Rice, but there is still ground to be covered with both the player and West Ham before a deal can be completed.