By Sam Stone

15th Dec, 2022 | 11:10am

Chelsea 'internally discussing' Declan Rice move as West Ham United captain remains number one target

Chelsea are said to be “internally discussing” how much they are willing to spend on Declan Rice, with the West Ham captain still their number one transfer target, according to The Express.

Football London reported (14 December) that Rice is Chelsea’s prime target and that a move is expected to take place in the summer of 2023.

TalkSPORT also suggested in the summer (11 July) there was a “gentleman’s agreement” in place to allow Rice to leave the London Stadium in 2023.

It appears the interest from West London hasn’t gone away, with talks now taking place between the hierarchy at Stamford Bridge on when they will make their move for the West Ham star (The Express, 15 December).

Matter of time

Most West Ham United fans will now be able to accept that Rice is destined for bigger and better things, particularly after his performance for England against France in the World Cup semi-final. Rice was absolutely superb against the World champions and was unfortunate to be on the losing side.

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His performance has even seen the likes of Tony Adams call for Rice to be captain of his country in the coming years (The Sun, 12 December). It would not be a surprise to see the 23-year-old given the armband in the future. He leads by example and rarely puts a foot wrong on the pitch, and when he does, he makes up for it almost immediately.

Sadly, his exploits in Qatar have further reaffirmed the need for Rice to be playing in the Champions League. He’s already an exceptional midfielder, but to take his game to the next level, he simply has to be competing with Europe’s best on a regular basis. It will be hard to take for the London Stadium faithful, but as long as the club receive a large transfer fee, everyone will wish the midfielder well in his future endeavours.