Does Declan Rice want to be the main man at Arsenal – or a bit part player at Man City?

A new revelation about Declan Rice’s future emerges each second, each minute. After West Ham lifted the Europa Conference League, their Chairman, David Sullivan, admitted it was time they let Rice leave for greener pastures. Ever since then, the feeling has been that the Hammers captain was headed to the Emirates.

It was no secret that the Gunners had labelled him their must-buy in 2023. Two bids later, Arsenal are yet to convince West Ham, who are very open to selling him, to sell them their midfield engine. Arsenal are set to try again with a third bid.

As they consider doing that, Manchester City have watched them fumble in their move for the 24-year-old, and they have now fully entered the race for the Englishman. In fact, at the moment, it is still being determined who Rice will end up joining. Although the thought is that West Ham could decide where Rice plays next as they are the ones to accept a bid, in the end, he will be the one to decide where to play next, City or Arsenal.

Gooners believes he wants them, but are you sure he will tell Man City a big ‘No’ if they come in with a better bid and higher wages and can convince the Hammers to sell to them? instead?

Wherever Rice decides to go, it will rewrite his name in the history books. Rice’s desire to leave West Ham already labels him as unloyal. Unlike Harry Kane, he has got his hands on a trophy (the Europa Conference League) at West Ham; looking at that trophy win, a Hammer can be convinced of winning further trophies at the London Stadium – but not Rice.

If Rice had opted to join Manchester City, he would have sold his soul to the club. You and I agree that Jack Grealish of Aston Villa was more lovable than Grealish of Manchester City. While at Villa, you could tune in to watch him; remember how fans called out Gareth Southgate in Euro 20 to play him more?

At Manchester City, that feeling went away; yes, he is flourishing, but he lost his charm with PL fans, who now see him as just another Man City PL star. It is expected for a Manchester City star to play at a high level.

Is Rice guaranteed to be their main man in the midfield if he joins City? No way: Rodri will still rule the Man City midfield. Bernardo Silva also impresses there; John Stones is becoming undroppable in City’s midfield. Kovacic has just been signed, and his experience playing in the Champions League and at a top-six club gives him leverage to be starting in front of him.

If Rice joins Arsenal, he could be a pioneer, a player who helps Arsenal restart their dominance in the PL. He could be the first player to boldly refuse a move to Manchester City, where it’s guaranteed he’ll be on a good salary with guaranteed silverware.

However, Rice’s move to the Emirates could show his desire to join Arteta’s project, start as the most important player in our midfield, and see the Gunners, with Rice’s assistance, rise to the top and challenge the Cityzens for every trophy…

How does Rice want to be remembered? Only time will tell.

Sam P

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Tags Declan Rice Man City


  1. This is what a stake here, Declan Rice could have the same impact at Arsenal as Van Dyke had at Liverpool.

    That’s what the Citizens are aware of.

    1. Main man?? When we have star like Saka, Jesus, odegard, saliba, and so on. Even Saka’s market value is almost double of Rice. I am not sure but Halaand less mancity might have less value than Arsenal team. Currently Arsenal stake is high so does its players and that’s why top players are willing to join us . Only thing is if we able to fork out hefty amounts for those players.

      1. Not sure about Declan Rice been Arsenal main man if he joins.
        He would significantly strengthen the spine of the team, especially if Partey remains.

  2. There is talk that Pep wants to pair him up with Rodri ,I cannot see Man City paying him 100 m for a player to sit on the bench .
    I’m not a huge fan of his but if partey goes then we will need some solidarity in that CM and I guess he fits the bill ,for that price though 🤔

    1. How quick things changes in football ball. Partey arguably the most important player of our squad has changed to outcast! Still wonder what might have gone wrong! And thats most worry some because last season Arsenal played well when partey played well. Without him Arsenal suffered. So can we able to replace him effectively?

      1. Even relegation team is spending 100mil in EPL, so that’s not big deal. We have to give credit to Arteta and team for this. The expensive buys Arteta made are ramsay, white, meghales, zinko, odegard, partey, jesus, viera, trossard, kiwor. 8 of these are important 1st team players, meaning Arteta got 80% transfer success which is a very good number. At least we are not having high profile flops that we used to have and that drowned us in the sea of mediocrity despite being big spenders. So we might need 3 more transfer success to get hold of title. So good luck with that

        1. Pls remove viera from the list he his a mediocrity player, making it 70% successful buy which is till a great transfer success

    1. Let’s hope so Greco
      There are a growing number of teams able to challenge for glory now. Unless the club invests sufficiently by the owner and wisely by the management team, Arsenal may well be left behind or facing an uphill struggle to compete

  3. Arsenal should bid on all Man City targets and see how they like it when their target prices are bumped up. Also, (the no goal contribution) Rice should grow a pair and insist to Westham that unless he joins Arsenal for £90 million that he will be an unhappy player at Westham and that it would effect his game and that this time next year, they probably will get religated. I would think Arsenal could get Real’s Tchouameni for £80 million. 23 year old Tchouameni is a true world class defensive midfielder with an astonishing 94% pass rate. Such a gifted midfielder would improve Arsenal two fold. Arsenal should wake up and smell the coffee, Rice is not pushing hard enough for the move, and you can get better elsewhere for less money.

  4. In a real team, every man plays his part. Only prima donnas, want to be the “main man”. Jus sayin…

  5. At the moment we are solely in the driving seat. Although there is speculation that Sh!tty are interested they have yet to put a bid in. This is typical of any selling club and agent to get as much money as possible for their asset. Unfortunately Arsenal are not very good at it when coming to selling players.

    If we want the player and the player wants to come then we need to meet as close to West Hams demands to get this deal.over the line.

    I’ve said it on a previous post and I accept 100 million is a lot of money for a DM but what he brings to the club for commercial activity and worldwide appeal, the initial outlay will be just a drop in the ocean to what we could potentially earn.

    1. NB, are you suggesting that Declan will become such a popular player, he will sell some shirts?
      Heaven forbid that your using this logic – next thing you’ll be accused of not supporting the manager as well.

      Of course I agree with you and let’s hope he is so successful he rivals all those before him and becomes our own SHIRT SELLING GENIUS – the revenue for the club will help pay his salary and signing on fee.

      I do believe he WILL sign for us, rather than city, as that also makes logical sense.

      1. Why would rice be a particularly big name for shirt sales? You’re talking as though you think he will be a David Beckham – it’s not about just being likeable or being a really good player, there’s a lot more to it. It’s about marketing, and I don’t see anything about rice that would make him especially marketable (not that I’m an expert to be fair!) – I mean, no more so than ramsdale, odegaard or zinchenko, for example, I wouldn’t have thought. They all have a certain charisma/attraction, but not enough to justify paying such a huge transfer fee over, as it might have been for players like Beckham in the past (who was a top player, but still far more famous than his football ability gave him any right to be on it’s own).

        1. Might as well just get David Beckam in. He will sell Shirts like no one else. Get the likes of Ronaldinho, Iniesta, Zlatan , Figo etc back. They surely can sell shirts too 😊

          Because in Rice, there is no evidence that he is a “.Shirts Selling Genius”. Why waste all that cash?
          Bring back Henry or our invincibles, they will sell shirts too.

          What’s the point of signing players to perform / win you games and trophies etc when you can go the other way by buying players that are commerical magnets / Shirt selling Geniuses?

          But but is there any player in our current sqaud that can sells shirts like hot potatoes?

          1. He was a really top player with a unique way of striking the ball, and that obviously helped, but he married someone who was also extremely famous and actively worked to increases his marketability. Messi is marketable purely because of his talent – C. Ronaldo is also, but he has taken steps to make himself stand out more (e.g. with his cringey goal celebration, and stance when taking free kicks – imo, at least)

        2. Well Davi, if MA rates him enough to spend a reported £100,000,000 for him, I certainly expect him to be a success.
          He’s already the captain of England, lifted a European trophy and, seemingly, attracting the likes of treble winning city, who also want to spend the same kind of money on him.
          I don’t think Declan has to prove anything, as he’s already done that… watch the shirt sales roll in!!

              1. KEN not a mistake at all but simply a prophecy which WIL Lhappen sooner, rather than later.

                Is Southgates mind reading then a “mistake”, or a gift, as I believe it to be!

          1. Rice might well be a success if we sign him, I don’t deny that, I just don’t understand where the shirt selling idea has come from – I don’t think his level of marketability is enough to offset the 100m fee to any significant degree.
            Saka is surely the most marketable/’shirt-sellable’ player within our squad currently, and I don’t expect that to change with the types of players we’ve been linked with (and there’s nothing wrong with that!)

      2. Ahh Ken, its a win win situation. A very good player that brings commercial value. Shirt sales are just a piddly % but when you have a team full of England idols, Gillette will come a calling🤣

        On a serious note… and I’m not saying he is in the same league (atm) but Beckham, Gerrard and Lampard wasn’t world beaters but because of their commercial value was classed as the face of their respective clubs, which earned millions for the player and the club.

        We are talking about the (possibly) next England Captain, and look how that panned out for Beckham? Also, he is a pretty boy🤫

        I’m an Arsenal fan, and any small gains is good for me and any future generations of Arsenal fans because we can’t compete with the.oil money… so it’s a start.

        1. Sorry Ken1945, I’m so excited by this transfer I never read your comment in context.🙄

          1. No problem my friend, it seems that others also didn’t read it in context.
            If you look at the players who have recorded the most sales, they are household names within the football world… and beyond (as names being touted above show) simply because they are top players… that’s why fans buy shirts and put their inames on the back.

            Now, if Declan does sign for us, becomes out captain (and England’s captain) leads us to trophies, then I can guarantee he will become a fans favourite, both here and around the world, he will earn the title of “SHIRT SELLING GENIUS”, swelling the income of the club, thus paying back some of his salary / signing on fee… simple really, but some just can’t grasp the fundemential situation.

            With shirts costing about £100 a go, he will be a great commercial asset, let alone his footballing skills – like you I’m really excited and, if he chooses us over city, a really positive message for MA and The Arsenal. 🤞🤞🤞
            Great Post from you by the way!!

        2. Never liked any of them except Beckham after he left Man utd but they were world class players. One of the best in the world in their times.

  6. Every player wants to play, that’s why to have a strong second team, as MC have is so challenging. Declan Rice is what we need, we have not been strong in midfield since Viera days, and Partey is good, but also unreliable. I believe Jorghino is happy not to be main man, but he is also a quality DM.

  7. I really dont get the article at all. Thats like saying (disrespectfully) that rice is not good enough for city. Nobody for sure could say if he is going to be a legend or a leg end but Rice will choose what team he wants and hopefully will be success at either, for himself. I am sure it will be Arsenal. We cant cock this one up, he wants to come!!!!!!

  8. Is this supposed to be some kind of manipulative title in the hopes that Rice might read it and realize the error of his ways 🤣

    1. I thought it was someone’s opinion, someone who took the time to write it and then sent it out for JA’s consumption and comments.
      Still, I’m looking forward to reading your next article PJ-SA and will respect the time and effort you will have put in to it 🤣😂🤣😂

    2. I thought it came across as some kind of manipulation attempt as well – it’s basically saying he’d be a sellout if he joins city.
      Several of city’s players have improved massively over the years – Grealish, stones, walker all became better, by my reading, because they were challenged to play different ways and forced outside of their comfort zones by pep. Arsenal might, in fact, be the easier choice because he won’t have so much competition from within the squad, but that doesn’t mean it’s the best one for his career. Depends what he wants.

      1. Didn’t think of it that way…. but he is a very good player in his position. So I’m all in on this transfer

  9. I’m a West Ham supporter and have been for 60 years. Is Rice the real deal ? I think that’s obvious to nearly everyone. If you don’t think he is worth what we are asking you really do need to give your head a wobble. Arsenal are trying to buy him on the cheap ( don’t blame you for trying ) but West Ham are not the full on selling club they used to be. Your board should get the deal over the line while they still can because he will end up at City otherwise. He is unique and can play in any attacking or defensive midfield/centre back position. and would have done if it wasn’t for Moyes archaic tactics. If you try to cheap it and trust me we have a board that excel in that you will miss out on him and most West Ham think it’s the best place for him.

  10. I feel like City were never and are not in for Rice. It’s all West Hams PR machine planting this City story in order to get Arsenal to panic and pay up.

    I might be wrong but as the days go by I am starting to think it all a bluff. If City want a player they come in straight away. But all we keep hearing is that they are preparing a bid but nothing is materialising.

    Mind game by West Ham it seems likes.

    We will wait and see..

    1. But we have had an emergency meeting… are you telling me there is no truth?🤣

      Now, however, as even more days go by and still City have NOT , apparently, made a firm bid, I am reverting to my original position that he will come to us.

      Your line about City NORMALLY coming in quickly, which they have NOT, is the key point!

      I cannot be VERY confident , obviously not, but only on balance of probabilities and esp as City has shown interest in another DM at approx £95 mill just now.

      Hopeful then but still a way to go, IMO!

      NO GOONER WISHES TO OVERPAY, but Rice IS a real stand out and team changing player, IMO.

  11. Let’s talk about what exactly is known before slugging the club’s reputation. We know Declan Rice is superb defensively. We know he is a big fan of our captain, Martin Odegaard and great friends with Ramsdale and Saka. We know he is impressed with Arteta and his project. We know he just had a baby and prefers to stay in London with his family and friends. We know Rice will be starter at Arsenal and bench warmer in Manchester. Finally we know Mykhylo Mudryk is way too expensive at 100M.

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