“Feel like they’re in the lead” – Journalist says Arsenal confident over major summer transfer
Arsenal “feel like they’re in the lead” in the race to sign West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice at the Emirates Stadium, journalist Simon Phillips has told GIVEMESPORT.
Mikel Arteta is looking to make a midfield addition to his Gunners squad this summer.
Arsenal transfer news – Declan Rice
According to a report in The Times, Arsenal have made Rice their top target for the upcoming transfer window and are confident that a deal worth around £80m will be enough to secure his signature in north London.
Meanwhile, reports in Spain have stated that Chelsea are also determined to wrap up a deal to bring the Englishman to Stamford Bridge, with the west London outfit also looking to bolster their midfield options.
CBS reporter Ben Jacobs has recently told GIVEMESPORT that Arsenal will be aggressive in their bid to sign the 24-year-old this summer and are at the front of the queue for his services.
Phillips believes that the Gunners are confident of wrapping up the acquisition of Rice later this year but has warned that situational variables can change between now and the end of the season.
What has Phillips said about Arsenal and Rice?
When speaking about Rice’s next potential destination, Phillips told GIVEMESPORT: “A lot can happen in the next two months until the end of the season.
“That one could go either way, but Arsenal feel like they’re in the lead for that at the moment.
“So, Chelsea might have to turn their attentions elsewhere, which will be to Lavia first and foremost.”
Would Rice be a good signing for Arsenal?
Rice – who bagged his third England goal in Thursday’s 2-1 Euro 2024 qualifying victory in Italy – would be an excellent signing for Arsenal having proven he is capable of exceptional Premier League performances over the last four years.
The 40-cap Three Lions international has made 229 appearances for the Irons since his debut in 2017, hitting the back of the net 12 times whilst providing 13 assists.
Despite the London Stadium outfit’s struggles this term, Rice has achieved an average WhoScored rating of 6.96 for his displays in the top flight, which ranks him as the best-performing-player in David Moyes’ squad, indicating that the Hammers would be much worse off without him.
And the 6 foot 1 star compares favourably to his positional peers in some aspects of his game, ranking in the top 4% of midfielders across Europe’s big five leagues as well as the Champions League and Europa League for interceptions made per 90 minutes (1.90) over the last 365 days, according to FBref.
There is no debate that Rice would be an excellent addition to Arteta’s midfield next term, but whether they can secure his signing over Chelsea remains to be seen.