Man Utd, Man City given reality check over nine-figure pursuit of Prem star

Date published: Tuesday 14th September 2021 5:16 - Neil Foster

Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaking to Man City manager Pep Guardiola 2020

A report claims that West Ham United have yet to receive an official offer for Declan Rice and have no intention of selling the ‘happy’ midfielder.

The 22-year-old was already one of the most sought-after English players before enhancing his reputation at Euro 2020. The tough-tackling midfielder was a rock in the centre of the park alongside Leeds ace Kalvin Phillips. Unsurprisingly, a few top clubs have started to show an interest.

Both Manchester clubs have been linked while Chelsea are also known admirers. The Sun recently suggested City have made the Kingston-Upon-Thames-born ace their number one target.

Pep Guardiola is looking for a long-term successor to Fernandinho, who could be in his final season at the Etihad. But they will face a battle for his signature, with United ready to go toe-to-toe with their city rivals.

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There has been mixed messages over whether Rice want to remain at the London Stadium. He is under contract until the summer of 2024, with an option to extend for a further 12 months.

David Moyes will doubtless hope the club’s money men can persuade the man with 16 England caps to pen fresh terms. But it was reported during the summer that the youngster has already rejected an improved deal.

However, journalist Tom Clark insists the player is content and the Hammers are sticking to their valuation.

“What I have been told is he is happy, not for sale & West Ham confirmed to me they’ve never received an offer for him & aren’t open to one,” he said on Twitter. “£100m is value West Ham have put on him.”

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After starring for Gareth Southgate’s side in the European Championship, Rice is now back in the Hammers ranks. And, far from appearing fatigued after his summer exploits, he has played every minute of West Ham’s four top-flight games.

There are no issue at the moment but it remains to be seen if big-money offers turn his head next summer. Jack Grealish was an Aston Villa fan and loved the club but he was still lured to City for £100m.

West Ham boss David Moyes smiling after a Premier League win

That is the value that Moyes has put on Rice, with a few pundits suggesting he is actually worth more. The Londoner seems to have the footballing world at his feet and can focus on playing matters – at least until the summer.

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