West Ham will not lower their €80m (£73m) asking price for Declan Rice during the January transfer window, according to Fabrizio Romano.
The usually reliable journalist claims that the Blues were put off by the valuation at the start of the season but the Hammers will still ask for the same amount when the Blues make another attempt to sign the player next month:
“In September, when Chelsea contacted West Ham, they asked for 80 million Euros, to sell Declan Rice, that’s why Chelsea said ‘no’ at this moment we can’t pay this money, let’s see in January. At the moment, West Ham aren’t going to change their idea about the price of Declan Rice, so it won’t be so easy, but the new mentality of Chelsea with the transfers is that ‘we just want our top targets, we’re not going for plan B or C, we have this new mentality it’s top targets or nothing.’ So, I’m convinced they will try again for Declan Rice in January.”
Romano is adamant that Rice wants to join Chelsea, with the 21-year-old keen to work under manager Frank Lampard, but it appears much will depend on whether they can match the price that West Ham are asking for the player.
Considering his recent performances for the Irons, it is not an unreasonable figure to demand, and if the Blues cannot the match the amount, fans will be delighted to see the midfielder staying at the London Stadium.
It is not thought that Rice would force through a move either, so West Ham definitely have a strong position in negotiations.