West Ham United ‘expecting third Arsenal bid for Declan Rice’

West Ham United are reportedly bracing themselves for a third Arsenal bid for Declan Rice, who has been the subject of two rejected offers from the Gunners so far.

West Ham United are reportedly preparing themselves to receive a third bid from Arsenal for captain Declan Rice.

The Gunners are already believed to have failed with a pair of £80m and £90m bids for the 24-year-old, whose contract at the London Stadium expires next summer.

Arsenal’s latest offer would have seen West Ham receive £75m upfront with £15m in performance-related add-ons, but the Hammers are still demanding as much as £100m to sanction a sale.

With Arsenal dragging their heels, Manchester City have reportedly stepped up their interest in Rice and are said to be preparing a formal bid for the former Chelsea academy product.

While Arsenal cannot compete with the Citizens’ financial muscle, the Gunners are still hopeful of winning the race for their number one target, who is believed to have earmarked the Emirates as his preferred destination.

West Ham United's Declan Rice celebrates scoring their third goal on April 20, 2023© Reuters

According to the Daily Mail, West Ham believe that a third Arsenal bid for Rice is now imminent, and the Gunners are aware that they will have to finally breach the £100m mark to ensure success.

The report adds that West Ham want the long-running saga to be resolved imminently, with any funds raised from the sale of Rice expected to be used on a big-money replacement.

Arsenal have supposedly been pressed into action after learning of Man City’s intention to make a formal bid, but the treble-winners are not thought to have made their move just yet.

A player-plus-cash deal with Manchester United involving Scott McTominay or Harry Maguire has also been mooted, but Rice is not thought to be a priority target for Erik ten Hag while the Red Devils try to solve their striker conundrum.

Man United’s tedious takeover process is also hindering their ability to make early moves in the transfer window, apparently leaving Ten Hag furious as Arsenal and Man City go head-to-head for Rice’s signature.

Declan Rice in action for West Ham United on October 1, 2022© Reuters

Rice has risen through the academy ranks at West Ham since leaving Chelsea’s setup in 2013, and the Hammers skipper now has 15 goals and 13 assists to show from 245 matches for the capital club.

The England international captained David Moyes‘s team to Europa Conference League glory in the 2022-23 campaign, adding another five goals and four assists from a half-century of appearances.

However, having rejected offers of a new deal from West Ham due to his desire to play in the Champions League, co-chairman David Sullivan has confirmed that he will be allowed to move on for the right price.

Arsenal could wave goodbye to both Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey this summer, while Albert Sambi Lokonga‘s future is also in limbo ahead of another proposed loan move.

The Gunners are expected to wrap up the signing of Kai Havertz early next week as the Chelsea man prepares to undergo his medical this weekend, while Southampton’s Romeo Lavia is also believed to be of interest to Mikel Arteta.

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