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Chelsea: Declan Rice ‘open to the prospect’ of joining

Chelsea: Declan Rice 'open to the prospect' of joining - Chelsea News

Chelsea transfer target and West Ham captain Declan Rice is ‘open to the prospect’ of joining the Stamford Bridge club, according to reports.

The Lowdown: Boehly busy…

Spearheaded by American business tycoon Todd Boehly, the west Londoners have seriously attacked this January transfer window already.

The Premier League giants have sealed six major signings this month, spending a combined £156m in bringing in Mykhalo Mudryk, Benoit Badiashile. Joao Felix, Noni Madueke, David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos (Transfermarkt).

Remarkably, Graham Potter‘s side could still add a few more new faces to their ranks, with reliable reports suggesting that they could be in the market for a defensive midfielder.

There are apparently ‘lots of plates spinning’ at Chelsea, with Dean Jones sharing an update for GiveMeSport on the club’s long-standing interest in Rice.

The Latest: Rice ‘open’ to joining Chelsea…

Despite recent links to Arsenal, it is believed that Chelsea are still firmly in the mix for the West Ham superstar, with some officials at Stamford Bridge remaining huge fans of the 24-year-old.

According to Jones, the Blues ‘will not disappear’ in the race for Rice, and the reporter has urged the club’s supporters ‘not to discount’ them just yet.

It is also claimed that the £75m-valued international is ‘open to the prospect’ of re-joining his childhood club, handing Chelsea a possible boost.

The Verdict: Midfield upgrade

Rice has stood out as one of the English top flight’s best central midfielders in recent years, with Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher even drawing comparisons to Manchester United hero Roy Keane.

Teddy Sheringham has also likened the 24-year-old to Premier League all-time great Steven Gerrard – clearly huge tags for a player who is still approaching the prime of his career.

Rice’s ceiling is vast and could further improve playing alongside some big names across London at Chelsea; and going by the aforementioned recent transfers, £75m appears to be affordable from Boehly’s perspective.

The numbers back that the Irons captain could be a defensive midfield upgrade for Potter, with Rice averaging a higher rate of interceptions per 90 in the middle than any Chelsea player with more than five top-flight appearances this season (WhoScored).

Homegrown and experienced in the Premier League (186 appearances), the Three Lions ace can also contribute in the final third, with one goal and three assists this term.

Previously called ‘sensational’ by members of the media and ‘the best in his position in the world‘ by team-mate Aaron Cresswell, the 24-year-old ticks a lot of boxes, and it seems clear that he could improve Potter’s options at Stamford Bridge.

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