By West Ham Zone speaking to Frank McAvennie

17th Feb, 2023 | 6:10pm

We’re delighted to welcome former West Ham United striker Frank McAvennie as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the London Stadium

West Ham should look to sign Manchester City midfielder Kalvin Phillips as a direct replacement for Declan Rice if he leaves this summer, says Frank McAvennie.

Rice is expected to leave the London Stadium in the summer with a host of top sides taking an interest in a deal that has been reported to worth anything between £70m and £120m.

But his exit would leave a gaping hole in midfield for the Hammers, and McAvennie would like to see the club move for his international teammate Phillips after his move to Manchester City didn’t work out too well from Leeds.

“Kalvin Phillips, I’d take him all day long,” he told West Ham Zone. “He’s not getting a game.

“Get him for half the price and you’d be making a good profit [on Rice].

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“If Declan was to go I wouldn’t mind him at West Ham. He’d be the ideal replacement. He’d get a game at least.

“Him and Paqueta would do alright in the midfield. But thats me looking ahead at the top of my wishlish if Declan goes. I think he’s going to go somewhere.

“I wouldn’t mind taking him as a replacement. Get him fit and put him in the team.

“I’m not saying Declan wouldn’t be missed, but you’ve got a ready-made replacement there, who can play in the Premier League which is half the battle when you’re bringing foreigners in, you don’t know if they can do it.”

Phillips was the subject of a £50m bid from the Hammers when he was at Leeds, but the club rejected it as they were battling against relegation.

He then moved to Man City in a deal worth around £42.5m, but would likely be available for less than that having failed to make a single Premier League start this season so far.