Chelsea and Manchester City rule out signing Declan Rice

Chelsea and Manchester City have reportedly opted out of pursuing West Ham United star and Manchester United transfer target Declan Rice.

According to ESPN, Manchester United have been granted a free run to sign West Ham United talisman Declan Rice from West Ham United with rivals Chelsea and Manchester City unlikely to chase the Englishman in the summer transfer window.

Rice has developed into one of Europe’s best young midfielders since breaking into the Irons’ first team in 2017. The subject of his future is set to dominate the tabloids in the upcoming summer transfer window, with some of the Premier’s biggest clubs minister. The League has been courting him for a few months.

The 23-year-old has been in fine form this season and his outstanding productivity at both ends of the pitch has been a key driver of West Ham’s incredible run in the Europa League. He has excelled in a progressive central midfield role and is enjoying his most productive season, scoring five goals and four assists in 46 appearances in all competitions this term.

The England international has just two years left on his current contract at the London Stadium. Recent reports suggest Rice has turned down a new contract offer from the Hammers, with the player believing the summer window could be a good time for him to move on and continue his career.

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If West Ham fail to clinch Champions League football for next season via the Europa League, retaining their star man could become even trickier. As such, a three-way battle for his services is set to kick off this summer between Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea. However, according to ESPN, the latter two have pulled out of the running, leaving Manchester United with a clear run.

Manchester City have been one of the most successful sides in the Premier League over the past decade in terms of the number of trophies won and would have matched Rice’s ambitions. He may also have been an ideal successor for longtime stalwart Fernandinho, who is set to end his trophy-laden career at the end of the season.

But the report says they have turned their full attention to signing a world-class striker, with Erling Haaland closing in on a move to the Etihad Stadium. Moreover, with Rice likely to charge a fee above the British record set by Jack Grealish’s £100m transfer to Manchester City from Aston Villa last summer, Cityzens fear they may be embroiled in a saga.

Chelsea also hold a long-term interest in Rice and have been tracking his development for a long time, but their ownership situation is hampering their ability to meet the Hammers’ asking price. Moreover, manager Thomas Tuchel could prioritize defensive signings first, with Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen set to leave for free this summer.

So Manchester United could have a free run at Rice this summer. But with they looking set to miss out on a top four spot, it remains to be seen whether the Red Devils club can persuade the West Ham midfielder to sign on to Erik ten Hag’s new project at the start of the season. next season.

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