West Ham eyeing London rival’s player as potential Declan Rice replacement

West Ham United is reportedly considering a move for Fulham midfielder Joao Palhinha as they prepare for the possible departure of Declan Rice to Arsenal, relays the WHZ. The Portugal international has caught the attention of the Hammers, who are monitoring his situation closely. Fulham, facing the need to operate sustainably, could be compelled to sell Palhinha if an acceptable offer comes in. The Guardian has reported a potential fee of £50 million for securing his services, indicating West Ham’s seriousness in pursuing the talented midfielder.

While Joao Palhinha may not possess all the attributes of Declan Rice, he excels in certain areas that overlap with Rice’s skill set. The Portugal international demonstrates exceptional positional awareness and is highly effective at breaking up play and orchestrating ball recycling. These qualities make him an appealing prospect for David Moyes, who emphasizes transitional play in his tactical approach. With Fulham also in need of selling players to balance their financial situation, Palhinha represents their most valuable asset.

Fulham is expected to play hardball with Palhinha’s price, just as West Ham did in their negotiations for Declan Rice. However, the London-based club might have to concede if the player expresses a desire for the move. Moving to the London Stadium would be a significant step up for Palhinha, and unless offers from elite clubs materialize, a transfer to West Ham holds a strong possibility.

West Ham United’s pursuit of Joao Palhinha indicates their proactive approach to identifying a potential replacement for Declan Rice. With Fulham facing financial pressures, a substantial offer could prompt their willingness to part with the Portuguese midfielder. Palhinha’s skill set aligns well with David Moyes’ playing style, making him an ideal signing for the Hammers. While negotiations may prove challenging, a move to West Ham represents a notable progression for Palhinha unless offers from higher-profile clubs materialize.