It is widely reported that Arsenal is looking to sign a marquee midfielder in the upcoming summer transfer window and the top target for them is believed to be West Ham United’s star player, Declan Rice, relays the GoonerTalk outet.
The 24-year-old English international has been one of the most consistent defensive midfielders in the Premier League and showed his exceptional skills once again in the recent 1-0 victory against Manchester United. Rice completely controlled the midfield, making 60 touches and 34 accurate passes. He also won seven of his nine duels, managed four dribbles, four interceptions, and two tackles.
Although he started off playing in the number six role, towards the end of the game, he took up a more advanced position but was unable to make the final pass. Despite this, it was another top-notch performance against a Big-Six side, and Arsenal should start negotiations with West Ham as soon as their campaign concludes.
While Rice wasn’t at his best in terms of distribution in the most recent game, he has been highly effective throughout the season, having completed 88% of his passes. His defensive abilities rank among the best in the Premier League, and he also possesses the ability to make late runs into the opposition’s third to create scoring opportunities for his teammates.
GoonerTalk believe that Rice would be an excellent addition to Arsenal’s squad, as he could play in both the number six and number eight positions. Initially, Arteta could deploy him in the defensive midfield role, but with his strong distribution and excellent ball control, he could also play in more advanced positions.
Earlier reports suggested that Rice could be available for £80 million, but with West Ham now likely to remain in the Premier League next season, the price could be much higher. However, acquiring Rice would still represent a shrewd piece of business for Arsenal, given his potential to be a leading midfielder for years to come and to play a vital role in the club’s long-term success.