By making their initial offer for the West Ham midfielder on Monday, Manchester City stepped up their effort to sign Declan Rice before Arsenal. Mikel Arteta considers Declan Rice the top target, and Arsenal has already faced two rejections for their offers.
City will replace Ilkay Gündogan, who completed his transfer to Barcelona on Monday, with the England midfielder. City has officially presented West Ham with a deal worth £80 million plus an additional £10 million.
It will be interesting to see how West Ham reacts to City’s offer because they have been holding out for at least £100 million for Rice.Arsenal’s opening two offers left the London Stadium officials unimpressed.
Arsenal’s second bid was £75m plus £15m in add-ons, but they wanted to spread the initial part of the payment over five years. West Ham want the guaranteed portion to be spread over fewer instalments.
The sense until now has been that Rice’s preference is to join Arsenal. He admires Arteta’s football and sources have stressed that the 24-year-old does not want to leave London. Arsenal are planning a third bid and are likely to need to counter City’s offer by meeting West Ham’s asking price.
People had anticipated that after add-ons, they would pay more than £100 million.Arsenal won’t have any trouble reaching a personal understanding with Rice.
The opportunity to play for Pep Guardiola, however, will undoubtedly put Rice’s resolve to stay in London to the test.. Guardiola has led City to the treble and Rice would be joining the dominant force in European football. He would know that moving to City would take his understanding of how to play in midfield to another level.
Rice had a meeting with Guardiola towards the end of last season, and sources last night suggested that City, who are also attempting to sign the RB Leipzig defender, Josko Gvardiol, would devise a way to complete the deal.
They plan to strengthen their midfield by acquiring Mateo Kovacic from Chelsea for £25m plus £5m in add-ons.While they already have Rodri and Kalvin Phillips, losing Gündogan to Barca was not part of the plan and came as an unexpected setback.City also risk Bernardo Silva moving to Saudi Arabia on a lucrative deal.