There is good reason to believe Declan Rice will be an Arsenal player next summer

If there is one certainty this season, it is that Mikel Arteta will acquire a midfielder.

There’s no rule against signing a midfielder this winter, but if not, we can expect Arsenal’s main signing this summer to be a midfielder.

Declan Rice has already been branded as Arteta’s ideal midfield transfer target. A move for the West Ham man could be everything most Gooners desire, but there are two potential stumbling blocks.

For one, Chelsea’s long-term interest in Rice, as seen in the Mykhailo Mudryk deal, may make the deal difficult. The Blues may be eager to beat the Gunners in their move to sign Rice.

However, the second hurdle that Arsenal would have had to overcome to convince Rice to join them—qualifying for Champions League football—may be key for them to beat Chelsea to the 23-year-old’s signature.

It would be unthinkable for Arsenal not to qualify for the Champions League next season, given that everything indicates that Champions League football will return to the Emirates.

Chelsea, on the other hand, will have to do something miraculous to qualify for Champions League football, given their struggles this season. Rice wants to play in the Champions League, and that is exactly how Arsenal will get him.

“One hundred percent, I want to play in the Champions League,” Rice said last month as reported by Sky Sports.

“For the last two or three years, I’ve been saying that. I’ve been playing consistently well for my club, and I feel like I really want to keep pushing.

“I see my friends here who are playing Champions League and for big trophies. You only get one career, and at the end, you want to look back at what you’ve won and the biggest games you’ve played in.”

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Tags Declan Rice


  1. Rice have shown the desire to want to play in champions League and we will have advantage over Chelsea and Liverpool if they don’t qualify Manchester city and man United would not need him reason is they already have lots of CDM in their team man city have Philips and Rodrigo,Gundogan man United have Casemiro,Mactominay and Fred

      1. Only in certain circumstances , chief among them being for whichever club agrees and is able, to meet WEST HAMS HIGH ASKING PRICE.

        Players under contract have only a limited option therefore.

    1. Would love Caicedo too but the amount Brighton are asking for I’m not sure whether it is even financially possible given our outlay so far especially in a January transfer window. The only probable way it could happen is if we take a leaf from Chelsea’s book and amortize payments over something like a six year contract for him before the new FSR rules eliminate that loophole but I’d be surprised if the club went down that avenue.

  2. Tbh I’m more concerned with who we are looking to bring in this month, Elneny’s injury making it a more urgent necessity and unfortunately Rice isn’t an option as there is no way WHU will sell in the middle of a relegation battle.

    1. EAG,

      I think both Onana and Bamba (young Italian playing
      in Portugal 1st division) would be shrewd additions
      to cover for TP. Onana has the EPL experience in his
      locker, but both are very young, extremely talented
      players that possess the necessary attributes and
      acumen to excel @ the DM position.

      1. I think out of the two players Bamba is more likely to happen (reported £26M release clause) and Everton asking for too much at £50M but my own personal preference would be one of Caicedo, Amrabat or Zubimendi however they would all be difficult negotiations with their respective clubs.

        1. Martin Zubimendi is the best of the bunch but he thinks his form could be used to clawed back both Real Madrid and Barcelona to win LaLiga.

          It’s not an impossible task but it appears that’s the biggest stumbling block to get the kid.

          His release clause is £52 mil , which from my understanding Edu is prepared to meet.

          1. Thought the issue was that he doesn’t want to move until the summer at least. Know players can say things and not mean them but this seemed pretty definitive a number of weeks back:

            “When the market opens, it’s normal for there to be rumours, they’re always there, but I’m lucky to be surrounded by good people who make me focus on La Real and I don’t want to waste energy on other things, I’m clear about what I want for this year and it is Real,” he said.

            “The clause did not go up. The truth is that it is a subject that surprised me, because I was very happy for having renewed and I saw that there were many comments about the clause not having gone up. It is a figure that, compared with other colleagues, I thought was balanced, what it had to be.”

          2. As long as our bid for Caicedo is already rejected by Brighton, Edu must look to trigger that release clause for Zubimendi.

  3. I want Rice AND Calciedo😃, the one an option for Xhaka’, and the other for Partey.
    Elneny and Sambi out, the one permanently and the other on loan

  4. It’d be great if he joins us, but not with 100 M price tag. He is homegrown and young, but I reckon his skills to be inferior to Partey

    It’d be much cheaper to activate Bennacer’s release clause. But maybe Arteta won’t be interested, because he is smaller than Rice, Partey and Lokonga

    I still see the potential in Lokonga, who could have another chance to play CDM in FA Cup if Elneny is injured. If he can show a good improvement on his touch consistency, I think Arsenal would keep him next season

    1. Nothing personal GAI but SL is not and never will
      be a DM in the EPL or any other domestic league he
      might play in. This is a unfortunately a square peg,
      round hole reality for the Belgian @ Arsenal. The young
      Belgian is a B2B or #8 all day long and if truly valued
      by MA should slot in as cover for GX in an advanced
      role in midfield. Unfortunately in his cameo roles
      as DM versus MU and in the EL fixtures consistently
      displayed a lack of situational awareness and
      necessary nuances of the position. The Belgian is a
      smooth, graceful athlete that IMWO lacks the tenacious
      aggressive mindset that is required to flourish as a

      Again not his fault, SL just isn’t a DM

      1. Maybe. But he could get another shot in the CDM position against Man City, because Partey has played too many games and Elneny is injured

        1. Respectfully if we want to give ourselves the best chance of knocking Man City out the competition then we need start with Partey and Xhaka

          1. I’d prefer to try our luck with our squad rotation and fringe players

            If Man City go to the next phase of FA Cup, they’d have to allocate their resources for that competition. If that happens, it could disrupt their focus on EPL

            1. And get hammered just as Chelsea did, and their squad has so much talent in the depth, I doubt very much it would disrupt their focus, he wants the CL old Pep, so maybe he may give up the FA Cup and possibly the league to secure the one trophy both he and City so want

      2. ACE Lokonga has no doubt been given opportunities in the Partey role and he didn’t do well,but he has also been given opportunities in the Xhaka role multiple times and he was just as disappointing . In the last match he started for us ,against Oxford ,he played the Xhaka role and he was ineffective. He had to be subbed for Xhaka and there was a massive difference when Xhaka came on.

    2. Hi GAI
      Check out :
      Player Comparison: Thomas Partey vs. Declan Rice – › … › Player Comparison Finder
      You will be a bit surprised…!

      I would want Declan Rice at Arsenal

      1. Thanks for the link, but I’d prefer my observation

        Partey got us out of tight spaces frequently, using his touches, passes and dribbles. I just don’t think Rice would be able to do that consistently as a CDM

        1. Declan Rice will only get better under the right manager, he is only 23 and will come into his element, he is talented, good on the ball, good feet, I would take him all day long

  5. Would Rice be coming as a back-up to Partey and Xhaka or a competitor for the role? Being the former implies the incoming player is of inferior quality to the ones already there.. A strategy I feel is not so progressive… When u look at the Guardiola approach he almost always buys serious contenders for playing positions… That’s what we need.. The likes of Elneny, Lokonga, Pepe should find permanent homes elsewhere and be replaced by players of a higher calibre.. Rice and Caicedo are definitely players of a requisite calibre but 100 mill is definitely overpaying.. I’m also not sure we have a replacement of Odegaard’s ilk in case of his unavailability..

      1. City got Rodri who was highly thought of at a similar age who came to learn from Fernadinho before taking over.

        Rodri “only” cost 55 million (less than Partey, one year prior and without activating his clause) with no HG tax.

    1. Unless we have a change in tactics which is pretty wholesale that would need more width from the fullbacks and also does not fit with our current fullback list he will be competing with Partey if further forward Ode/Vieira.

  6. £100 million over 5 years……that equates to £25 million / year…If we are gonna win few trophies in the next 5 years then I think it’s worth it

      1. Admin Pat, You know when math is not mathing it means someone is working with Pepe’s agent or Sanllehi is back in business.

  7. Partey and Rice would form a formidable duo in central midfield at the expense of Xhaka who would become first back up I suspect.Veiria was signed as an alternative to Odegaard but has a lot of developing to do to become genuine competition for our Captain.I cannot see us buying Caicedo and Rice and I favour the latter for his power and energy and his adaptability. Rice , can operate as a DM, BtoB or a CB where he played earlier in his career.Rice also has a very good temperament and adds another attacking option with his power in the air particularly at set pieces.For all these reasons, Rice would be an excellent acquisition imo.

    1. I’d favour the Rodri-Fernandinho relationship overall. Rice comes in as the understudy with game time and eventually takes over before Partey leaves (sale or contract expiry.)

      Obviously with the option to play both together or either in Ode’s slot, just don’t see Rice being pushed into the LAM for want of a better descriptor with his strong right foot. You don’t get the cross for Eddie’s equaliser against United from Rice in that position.

  8. As a fan who has neve rated at all rated Elneys effectiveness and considered him a poor player, I see his new injury as a blessing in disguise.

    IF he had to deputise long term it would ruin any title chance we have. So we will now surely bring in someone far better than he and release Elneny this summer. Even as back up and though willing and keen, he is just of way below the quality a side of our level needs or can even use as deputy.

    1. Elneny is not top-class to be fair but he is a top professional who is not nearly as bad as some people make out.

      His injury is not a blessing in disguise. If we were signing a CM this month we would have regardless and let Lokonga out on loan. Elneny will be released in the summer, as I’m sure he was aware of this when he agreed to sign on for another year and do a job for us. Deserves nothing but respect and our transfer plans were being made regardless.

  9. Would love Rice to come. If his head has been turned by our project then lucky us. He’s HG, could be a genuine successor to Partey and can play further back or forward if needed and particularly forward if trained well.

    1. That reads wrong. See him as DM option and emergency CB just saying if trained well he can do a job further forward when needed too.

  10. I’ve always wanted Rice, so I would be very happy with this.

    Bellingham is the dream, and if it wasn’t for what is going to be a crazy fee, I genuinely think we be an attractive option for him.

  11. Certainly Rice would be a fantastic addition, but I feel the need of the hour is to sign a midfielder in this transfer window. We are short in midfield and our title push will be given greater strength if we sign a midfielder. Quality squad depth will come into play as the season enters the business end.

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