Premier League • England

Arteta in dreamland as Arsenal reach ‘full agreement’ over next signing; West Ham greenlight Declan Rice medical

Declan Rice of West Ham is wanted by Arsenal

Arsenal have reached a breakthrough in negotiations with West Ham over Declan Rice, who is now able to undergo a medical with his prospective new club.

One week ago, Arsenal agreed to pay West Ham a transfer fee of up to £105m for Rice. However, the agreement wasn’t total, because the two clubs were still debating how the payments should be structured.

Arsenal have offered West Ham an initial fee of £100m, plus £5m on add-ons. In an ideal world, they have wanted to pay the fee – which is a rather extraordinary one for a player in the final year of his contract – in instalments.

West Ham, on the other hand, have been eager to get as much money in for Rice as early as possible.

On Tuesday night, The Athletic reporter David Ornstein confirmed that the two clubs had finally come to a ‘full agreement’ over the structure of the transfer.

Arsenal will pay the Rice fee over three instalments in a 24-month period. After achieving that breakthrough, they have received permission to put Rice through a medical.

Should all go to plan, the West Ham captain will also be able to finalise personal terms with Arsenal. By joining them, he will be able to participate in the Champions League for the first time in his career.

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Rice to spearhead Arsenal midfield revolution

While investing in Rice, Arsenal are ready to allow Granit Xhaka to leave and could remove Thomas Partey from their midfield too.

Xhaka and Partey were their main starters last season, which ended with them finishing as runners up to Manchester City in the Premier League.

Man City were also suitors for Rice, but pulled out after refusing to match Arsenal’s £105m package for the 24-year-old.

Rice will be leaving West Ham with 245 appearances for the club and 15 goals. He lifted the Conference League trophy as their captain at the end of last season.

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has also confirmed that Mikel Arteta has got his man. One minute after Ornstein’s revelation, Romano tweeted his signature ‘here we go’ line to confirm the move is imminent.

Arteta and technical director Edu have been cited as ‘crucial’ in getting the deal done for Arsenal.

It will not only be a club-record transfer fee, but also one that will make Rice the most expensive English player in history. Indeed, £105m will be a record fee for a British player transferring to a Premier League club.