Manchester United, Liverpool, And Chelsea All In Searing Hot Race For West Ham Star
In news unsurprising for most, Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is already looking towards January for recruits that may help the Red Devils regain ground on their Premier League rivals.
According to The Daily Star, with a little over six weeks until the transfer window reopens, one such player who has caught to Portuguese’s eye is West Ham’s Declan Rice, and Mourinho is well aware that the 13-time Premier League champions have stiff competition in acquiring the teenager’s signature.
The 19-year-old Rice - whose contract with the Irons expires at the end of this season - is currently on a salary of around £3,000 per week but is understood to be in the process of renegotiating an extension that could see that figure increased to £20k.
Mourinho reportedly favours Rice due to his versatility, particularly with his favoured central defender role - after United’s past failed expenditure for the purchase of a player to fulfil the position adequately. Furthermore, with Rice yet to choose his national affiliation (having been born in London but claim on Irish heritage through his father), this could be another player to fulfil the homegrown player quota.
Under new Hammers manager Manuel Pellegrini he has been preferred in a more central midfield role, where he has played in his nine EPL games this season.
In total Rice has made 44 appearances for West Ham since the end of the 2016/17 season and his confidence and composure belying his youth has reignited the interest of his former club Chelsea, with whom he spent seven years until the age of 14 at their academy. The Metro understands that the Blues are willing to offer him a staggering £40,000 to make the move across the capital.
Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool is another party sniffing around according to The Daily Express.
United and West Ham however have form for trading youngsters in recent years. The talented Ravel Morrison moved down to East London in 2012 under the instruction of Sir Alex Ferguson to ‘start a new life’ in the capital. Forward Ashley Fletcher made the decision just two years ago to leave Old Trafford and move to the London Stadium.
Is he good enough to play for Gareth Southgate's side?