Newcastle ‘definitely’ in hunt for major Prem midfield star Arsenal leading the race for

Declan Rice, Mason Mount, England, May 2022

Michael Owen has revealed he expects that Newcastle United will be in for Declan Rice in the summer, amid interest from a few sides.

The clock seems to be ticking down on Rice’s time at West Ham United. In 2021, Hammers boss David Moyes revealed he valued his star at “far, far more than £100million”.

Despite there being a lot of interest then, the potential of paying that sort of money seemed to have out sides off.

Indeed, Rice has remained at the London Stadium for another two years since then. However, with the length of his contract getting shorter and shorter, a move looks closer than ever.

The likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked. It’s the Gunners who seem to have the best chance of landing the England international at the moment.

Indeed, they’re top of the Premier League table and might well win the league. On top of that, Mikel Arteta reportedly has ‘optimism’ that his side will snare Rice.

That won’t stop other sides from trying their hand for the transfer. Indeed, links have remained to a number of sides despite the Gunners’ confidence.

Some more sides could soon join the race, too.

Owen sees sale this summer

Former Premier League striker Owen thinks the value Rice would add means a lot of sides will be keen on him.

“Yeah, I think Declan would make an impact in most teams, to be honest,” he said.

“Even Liverpool could do with someone like Declan. I think virtually every team would love to have him in their team.

“I guess it’s looking around at the teams who needs him most and who’s willing to pay and whether West Ham would sell. But I do think after this season, it’s going to be difficult for West Ham to keep him.

“He’s given great service and he probably wants to be competing in a team that can win trophies, can challenge and play in the Champions League etc.”

Newcastle ‘definitely’ in the hunt

Owen names one side that he feels are in that conversation, but have rarely been mentioned in the same breath as Rice.

“So I think there’ll be a lot of teams sniffing around Declan. Newcastle will definitely come into the equation,” he said.

“I mean it looks an upwardly mobile club and it looks like a club that you’d be excited about the future. So I’m sure he’ll have one eye on that if Newcastle are in for him.

“But if a team like Manchester United, or Manchester City or Liverpool are in for him, my suspicion is that those types of teams are still slightly ahead of Newcastle as we stand at the moment and that he would probably prefer to join one of those.”

Owen’s assessment of the situation seems pretty spot on. Yes, Newcastle are a side on the rise and he’d slot perfectly in, as a player who can impact big games and will be a star for years.

However, the Magpies aren’t in a dissimilar position to where West Ham were not too long ago. The last two seasons, the Hammers finished sixth and seventh, before dropping off this term.

While Newcastle’s rise has been steeper and appears at the moment as if it’ll be more sustainable, it’s impossible to say. As such, it would be unsurprising, were they to come in for him, if he was to opt for an established big side.

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