Arsenal officially signing midfielder Declan Rice for record price

Arsenal have finally secured star midfielder Declan Rice from West Ham after the two clubs agreed on a £105 million ($134 million) deal.

Rice had been the Gunners’ top target this transfer window. However, it wasn’t easy getting him from the Hammers, as Arsenal submitted three bids before the two sides came to an agreement on the fee for the 24-year-old.

Arsenal reportedly had a £75 million ($95 million) initial bid, which West Ham obviously rejected. After that, the Gunners improved the offer to £90 million ($115 million), though it still wasn’t enough. In the end, Arsenal had to make Rice the most expensive English player ever with the £105 million agreement–which is £100 million plus £5 million in add-ons, per Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano.

Rice is also the Gunners’ most expensive signing ever.

Declan Rice had been widely expected to leave this summer, with West Ham chairman David Sullivan even saying earlier in June that he wouldn’t hinder the defensive midfielder from seeking new opportunities elsewhere. Arsenal had been the biggest suitors for the youngster as well, and that much was clear with the multiple bids they made and their willingness to pay big time to obtain his services.

“I think it has to be. We promised him he could go. He set his heart on going. You can’t ask for a man who has committed more to us this season,” Sullivan said of Rice.

It remains to be seen how Arsenal plan to utilize and deploy Rice on the field, though it’s worth noting that the England international is exactly the kind of player that Gunners manager Mikel Arteta likes: a defensive midfielder who is versatile enough to fulfill various roles.

After finishing second in the Premier League in 2022-23, hopes are high that the addition of Rice will help them get over the hump.