West Ham United

West Ham United

Premier League • England

‘Worst kept secret in football’ – Agent spills Declan Rice fate with Man Utd and Chelsea named

West Ham midfielder Declan Rice

A prominent agent claimed Declan Rice “was going back to Chelsea” prior to their off-field turmoil, though has now hinted what the final outcome will be amid links to Man Utd. 

The 23-year-old can stake a claim to being the finest player in the Premier League playing for a club outside of the traditional top six. Rice continues to take his game to new heights year on year at West Ham and has added new strings to his bow this season.

Indeed, Rice can no longer be characterised simply as a defensive midfielder. His ability to carry the ball forward has been lauded with Rice chipping in with four goals and four assists this season.

The Hammers are thriving under David Moyes and look odds on to secure European football again next season.

Nevertheless, speculation continues to swirl over a move to one of England’s biggest clubs – namely Chelsea or Manchester United.

Rice would undoubtedly be a stellar addition at either Old Trafford or Stamford Bridge. And speaking to Caught Offside, football agent Rob Segal shed light on what the future would’ve held for Rice had Chelsea not been rocked by their off-field drama.

Segal claimed it was the “worst kept secret in the industry” that Rice was going back to Chelsea. The midfielder spent nine years in Chelsea’s system between 2006-14 and is close friends with Blues ace Mason Mount.

However, with their transfer plans now riddled with uncertainty, Segal isn’t as sure the Blues will win out.

Declan Rice is “snookered”

“I think Declan Rice is slightly snookered now,” said Segal. “He was going to go back to Chelsea. That was the worst kept secret in the industry but Chelsea isn’t in the same position now, obviously,”

The Daily Mail recently reported West Ham have slapped a whopping £150m price tag on Rice. Segal doesn’t see any club paying that amount – including Man Utd.

As such, if West Ham stick to their guns, Segal hinted Rice could be retained beyond the upcoming summer at least.

“Manchester City don’t need him because they’re well served in that position, at least for another season,” continued the agent.

West Ham price Declan Rice at £150m this summer

Declan Rice will cost £150m if any club wants to sign the midfielder from West Ham

“Are Manchester United up for it? With Paul Pogba going for nothing will they end up paying West Ham, on a good day, £80m for Rice? – That would be amazing business by the Glazers, wouldn’t it?”

“I know Rice’s valuation is well over £150m. But there is a valuation and then there is what the market is willing to pay.

“However, when you include everything else, such as wages, a club is still looking at a good £100m.

“I don’t know who is going to pay that. Football, financially, isn’t back to what it was.”