Arsenal ‘hold Rice transfer belief’ with star set to quadruple wages

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Arsenal reportedly believe that they ‘hold the edge’ in the race to sign West Ham’s wantaway star Declan Rice even with other Premier League rivals lurking. Mikel Arteta is desperate to acquire the services of the midfielder at the end of the season and views him as the ‘perfect addition’.

The Gunners have improved markedly this season, with very few people predicting that Arteta’s side would be involved in the title race and that they would be capable of putting the pressure on champions Manchester City.

The recruitment in north London has played a key role in their progress, with the additions of Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko last summer having raised the standards at the Emirates Stadium and prompted other players to improve.

Further investment into the squad is anticipated when the current campaign draws to a close, regardless of where the club finish in the table. And Arsenal already appear to be putting the groundwork in to sign their top targets.

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According to the Daily Star, the Gunners ‘have put themselves in pole position’ to sign Rice this summer with West Ham resigned to selling their club captain. The England international does not want to sign a new deal with the Hammers and is keen to compete at a higher level, having rejected a bumper deal with the club on numerous occasions.

Chelsea, City and Manchester United are all cited as being interested in Rice, though Arsenal’s confidence in acquiring the services of the 24-year-old has not gone unnoticed. Rice currently earns £60,000 per week at the London Stadium, though the Gunners are said to be prepared to quadruple that figure to lure him to the Emirates – thus making him one of their highest-paid stars.

West Ham previously valued their skipper at comfortably over £100million, though his reluctance to put pen to paper on a new deal means that David Moyes’ side may be forced to drop their valuation so that they can cash in on his services whilst they are still high. Rice’s current contract expires in 2025, meaning that if he is allowed to enter the final year of his contract with the club then his value will deplete markedly.

Arsenal are also in the market for other additions this summer, with another forward to put pressure on Jesus and Eddie Nketiah being prioritised. Arteta would also like to acquire another central defender following several poor performances from Rob Holding highlighting their lack of depth in that department.

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