Declan Rice Man City Transfer: Is it a good idea?

Declan Rice of West Ham United celebrates his side’s 1st goal during the Premier League match at the London Stadium, Stratford
Picture by Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd +44 7904 640267
16/04/2023 – Photo by Icon sport

Transfer guru David Ornstein has revealed that Manchester City are ready to rival Arsenal in the race to sign West Ham star Declan Rice today, with the midfielder expected to cost approximately £100m when he completes his summer exit from the Irons.

The Gunners’ latest bid for the England international, which is believed to be worth in the region of £90m with add-ons included, was rejected by West Ham, who believe their prized asset is worth more, and now the scramble or Rice’s services is expected to intensify with City throwing their hat into the ring

Treble-winners City will believe they have the pull and financial might to attract Rice to Manchester ahead of North London, but is a move for the highly-priced 24-year-old a good idea?

Where would Declan Rice fit in at City?

Manchester City seem intent on retooling their midfield options this summer and they have already allowed legendary German schemer Ilkay Gundogan to leave the club on a free transfer, with classy Croatian Mateo Kovacic drafted in from Chelsea as a like-for-like replacement.

However, in the number six or “anchorman” role – a position favoured by Rice for both club and country – Spaniard Rodri is the established first choice for City and the ex-Atletico Madrid man has only just turned 27.

Rodri’s fitness record is also impeccable and the midfielder, who scored the winning goal in the Champions League final against Inter Milan, rarely misses a game for the Premier League title holders.

rice and benrahma
7th May 2023; London Stadium, London, England; Premier League Football, West Ham United versus Manchester United; Said Benrahma of West Ham United celebrates with Declan Rice after he scores for 1-0 in the 27th minute – Photo by Icon sport

Indeed, Delcan Rice’s compatriot and fellow Three Lions regular Kalvin Phillips has been a very underused understudy for Rodri and the 27-year-old has started just two Premier League matches since swapping Leeds for Man City in a £40m last summer.

With Rodri’s place in Pep Guardiola’s XI not up for question, Declan Rice could compete with Mateo Kovacic for a role as a more advanced midfielder, though the Hammers skipper’s skill set doesn’t seem suited to that particular remit.

Rice averaged 2.1 tackles and 1.7 interceptions as a defensive screen for David Moyes last term, while his relatively low 1.0 key passes per 90 stat from the previous campaign indicates that line-splitting deliveries aren’t really his thing.

However, at £100m, City won’t be signing Rice to sit on the bench, so perhaps a change in formation or team structure could be in the offing for the Cityzens.

Arsenal a better fit for Rice?

Premier League runners-up Arsenal have been laying plenty of groundwork in their attempts to sign Declan Rice from London rivals West Ham, and though they have already had two bids rebuffed, the Gunners will hope that it’s third time lucky this week.

Mikel Arteta has plenty of incentives to offer Rice beyond the bumper £300,000 per week pay packet reported by the press.

A switch to The Emirates Stadium would allow Rice to stay in his beloved London, something that he is thought to be keen to do.

Rice would almost certainly be a vital cog in Arteta’s midfield machine from day one and that guarantee of first-team involvement could be enough to sway the 43-times capped England man’s opinion.

With Granit Xhaka’s summer exit leaving a gap in the middle and Thomas Partey’s future with Arsenal in question, Rice would have the run of things in the Gunners’ exciting young side and a clearly defined role in his favoured position could appeal to the ambitious 24-year-old.

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