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Chelsea strike ‘agreement’ with West Ham ace Declan Rice; nine-figure fee to be negotiated

Chelsea are seemingly ahead of Man Utd in the race to sign West Ham talisman Declan Rice after a report claimed an ‘agreement’ is in place.

The future of Declan Rice is shaping up to be one of the stories of the summer. The 23-year-old can stake a claim to being the best player in the Premier League currently playing for a team outside the traditional top six.

Rice is the epitome of the complete midfielder, being more than capable at turning his hand to both the defensive and offensive sides of the game.

He has played a pivotal role alongside Tomas Soucek in helping to lay the foundation from which West Ham have thrived under David Moyes. However, his rapid rise has predictably caught the eye of the Premier League’s big hitters.

Chelsea and Manchester United are the two clubs most commonly linked with a blockbuster raid. United are in desperate need of a world class operator in their midfield.

Indeed, the much maligned Fred-Scott McTominay axis has long been labelled as sub-standard for a team hoping to challenge for top honours.

Declan Rice return on the cards?

Chelsea have no shortage of elite-level midfielders from which to choose from. N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic have all excelled under Thomas Tuchel. However, the trio have all struggled with injury at times this season and Kante and Jorginho are already the wrong side of 30.

Now, Caught Offside (citing a report from Spain), claim Chelsea are in pole position to land Rice after striking an ‘agreement’ over personal terms.

Rice’s current deal at West Ham still has two years to run with the club holding an option for a further 12 months. However, the report claims the Hammers could be in line to generate a nine-figure sum if they sell in the summer while their bargaining position is strong.

Moyes had previously stated West Ham would not consider selling Rice for less than £100m. The Scot later suggested he now values Rice even higher.

The article claims an offer of £120m can seal a deal, though Chelsea will set about attempting to negotiate the price down first.

Whether the report turns up to be entirely accurate, only time will tell. However, links with Chelsea have…

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