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Declan Rice transfer latest: Smith Rowe swap, exit confirmed, Arsenal hold advantage over United

  /  autty

West Ham United captain Declan Rice continues to be heavily linked with a move to Arsenal, who are battling with Bayern Munich and Manchester United for his signature

The future of West Ham United star Declan Rice continues to dominate headlines as Arsenal, Bayern Munich and Manchester United battle it out for his signature.

At the end of the month Rice will be into the final year of his contract at the London Stadium, albeit the Hammers do have the option to extend the England international's deal by a further 12 months if they wish. understands that Gunners boss Mikel Arteta has made the England international his priority target for the summer transfer window as the Spaniard looks to strengthen his midfield ahead of the 2023/24 campaign.

But Arteta will likely face significant competition in the battle to sign the 24-year-old, with both Bayern and United also keen to prise the 24-year-old away from east London. With that being said, has taken a look at everything you need to know about Rice's future following West Ham's UEFA Europa Conference League glory.

Smith Rowe swap

According to The Sun, West Ham are interested in signing Arsenal starlet Emile Smith Rowe as part of any deal that would see Rice join the Gunners.

It is claimed that Hammers boss David Moyes is a huge fan of Smith Rowe, who struggled for game time last season after suffering from a number of injuries. The report goes on to claim that Rice is very keen on a move to the Emirates Stadium

Rice message

Rice has taken to social media to send a message to West Ham supporters, thanking them for all their support in recent times. The England international's Instagram caption read: "Thank you to the fans, staff, my friends and my family for all the support.

"I’m glad we could bring it home for you. It’s an honour to Captain this Football Club. History Makers (Trophy emoji)." The comments section was filled with Arsenal fans telling him to complete a move to north London.

Exit confirmed

West Ham chairman David Sullivan has confirmed that Declan Rice "has to" have played his last game for the club ahead of the summer transfer window. Speaking on talkSPORT, he said: "I think it has to be [Rice's final game for West Ham]. We promised him he could go. He set his heart on going.

"You can’t ask for a man who has committed more to us this season. In due course, he has to get on and we have to get a replacement – or several replacements.

"It’s not something we want to happen. We offered him £200,000-a-week 18 months ago. He turned it down. It’s cost him £10million to stay at West Ham in that time (in lost wages). And he wants to go. You can’t keep a player who doesn’t want to be there."

Arsenal stance understands that Arsenal are confident they have a strong offer for Rice but they also feel that it will ultimately come down to the player to decide amid interest from a host of other top European clubs, including the likes of Bayern Munich and Manchester United.

Arteta advantage

As per The Guardian, there is a mutual admiration between Rice and Arsenal boss Arteta, who rates the England international for more than his defensive attributes.

It is claimed that Manchester United may also decide to make a late move for the 24-year-old but their current focus is said to be on recruiting a striker, leaving the Gunners as the current favourites to sign the Hammers captain

Rice's England preference

Despite talks with Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel, Declan Rice is reluctant to leave England this summer, according to The Guardian.

The midfielder's preference to remain in the country leaves Arsenal as the favourites to sign him following West Ham's Europa Conference League final against Fiorentina.

Tuchel gives Bayern hope

Declan Rice could still sign to Bayern Munich despite currently preferring a Premier League move following another meeting with the German champions.

Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel is the main driving force behind their pursuit, according to Sky Sports Germany, with bosses continuing to discuss the West Ham captain amid the preparation of an official offer being made.

Bayern snubbed

Rice will prioritise a move to the Premier League , with the 24-year-old set to snub a move to Bayern, according to the Daily Mail.

It is claimed that Arsenal are frontrunners in the race to sign Rice, with the player thought to be keen to stay in London. However, Manchester United remain in the race despite their limited transfer budget, with the Red Devils prepared to offer a player plus cash offer in an attempt to sign the England international.

The report adds that Arsenal are set to make an opening offer in the region of £90 million after West Ham have played in their Europa Conference League final against Fiorentina next week.

Details of Tuchel phone call

Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel made his plans for Declan Rice very clear in a phone call between the two that took place earlier this week.

According to The Times, Tuchel told Rice he sees him as the perfect holding midfielder for his team with the Bundesliga champions ready to pay an £85million transfer fee for the West Ham captain.

Rice 'options open'

Arsenal look to clearly be in pole position to sign West Ham star Declan Rice this summer, however that may not be the case according to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano.

Speaking on his Here We Go podcast, he said: "It’s true that there is also Bayern interest, but at the moment it’s not that advanced, so Arsenal still feel they are the favourites to sign Declan Rice.

"But again, this is not something guaranteed yet. From what I understand, we had some reports in England the last two, three days that Rice already made it clear that he only wants to join Arsenal. I’m told this is not clear yet.

"I was speaking to some sources and they told me be careful because Declan Rice is keeping all the options open. Of course, Arsenal is a concrete option but this is not 100% guaranteed yet. So I think this is still an open race. They want more than £100m for Rice so this going to be a big fight, but for sure Arsenal are in the race."

Bayern bid

Bayern are prepared to pay a package worth £95million for Rice, as per the Mirror.

Their report claims that the Bundesliga champions believe they can beat both Arsenal and Chelsea in the battle to sign the England international, although West Ham will reject the £95million offer considering they value the player more than the potential bid. It is also said that the proposition could prove 'tempting' for Rice.

Opening bid expected soon

Writing on Twitter, Romano said: "Arsenal have not changed their plans for Declan Rice as top target: opening bid to be submitted in June, waiting for West Ham to clarify final price tag.

"Nothing is agreed or done, race remains open. Other clubs are also interested; so timing will be crucial."

Arsenal breakthrough

Arsenal have made a huge breakthrough in their attempt to land Declan Rice from West Ham this summer as the Mirror reports that the midfielder has made the Emirates Stadium his preferred destination. It comes as a huge boost to the Gunners, who face competition from the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United for his signature.

Ten Hag's acceptance

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag is 'resigned' to the fact that Rice will join Arsenal and not the Red Devils, according to The Sun.

It is claimed that Ten Hag has accepted United are unlikely to secure a deal to sign Rice, who is said to favour a move to join the Gunners. The Dutchman will make a move for Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount instead.

United battle

Arsenal are expected to lodge a structured £90m offer for Rice but West Ham want considerably more for their captain, according to the Daily Mail.

Their report claims that the Hammers believe that Manchester United are more likely to meet their demands for the 24-year-old. It is said that if the Gunners miss out on a deal for Rice, they will look to sign one of Ruben Neves, Martin Zubimendi or Moises Caicedo instead.

Chelsea suffer setback

Chelsea had Declan Rice at the top of their list of transfer targets this summer - but things have happened behind the scenes that 'did not go down very well with him and his family', according to @LondonsFirst_ - backed up by Simon Phillips.

Xhaka exit

Arsenal could already be making room for Rice in the midfield, with the news that Granit Xhaka looks set to leave the club. understands the Gunners star is in advanced talks over a move to Bayer Leverkusen, with a deal set at around £13million.

Arsenal prepare offer

According to the Telegraph, Arsenal are putting together an offer worth a club-record £92million for Rice, although West Ham want as much as possible of that sum paid up front.

It is also claimed that the Gunners remain confident that they can agree a deal with the Hammers despite interest from Manchester United.

West Ham decision

West Ham have seemingly set the exact date they would be willing to enter negotiations to sell star man Declan Rice this summer, according to a new report.

The Hammers are almost mathematically safe from relegation which could see the club increase their asking price for the 24-year-old.

Although there remains not much left to play for in their Premier League campaign, David Moyes's side are in the Europa Conference League semi-final. As per the Evening Standard, West Ham plan to delay talks for Rice until their European adventure is over which could be as late as June 7 which is when the final is set to take place.

A 2-1 first leg win against AZ Alkmaar has put the Hammers in control of the tie with the second leg in the Netherlands tonight.

Price stumbling block

According to the Daily Mail, Rice is open to joining the Gunners now they have qualified for next season’s Champions League, although it is claimed that West Ham's £100million valuation of their star player may prove to be a stumbling block.

Arsenal's current transfer record is the £72million they paid for Nicolas Pepe back in the summer of 2019, a move that ultimately failed to meet expectations. The most they have spent on a player during Arteta's time as manager is the £50million they shelled out for defender Ben White two years ago.

White has undoubtedly been a success at the Emirates Stadium, establishing himself as one of the most consistent defenders in the Premier League this season.

Mikel Arteta plans face-to-face talks

Mikel Arteta wants to hold talks with Declan Rice as soon as the season ends, according to The Mirror. The Arsenal boss is increasingly confident he can land the West Ham midfielder despite the Gunners’ faltering title bid.

The report adds that Arsenal’s head coach, who used to play in midfield himself, believes he can help convince the £100million-rated star to move to the Emirates Stadium ahead of Premier League rival interest. Arteta will urge the Gunners to make an official approach once the season has ended to try to tee up a huge transfer when the window opens in June.

Arsenal advantage

According to the Evening Standard, there is 'optimism' at the Emirates Stadium that Arsenal will sign the midfielder ahead of the likes of Chelsea and United. However, the report goes on to suggest that the recent valuations of Enzo Fernandez, Jude Bellingham and Moises Caicedo will be used as a benchmark when deciding a price tag for the Hammers skipper.

Arsenal priority

Despite bringing experienced No.6 Jorginho to the club during the January window, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is keen to bolster his midfield options at the end of the current window.

Champions League dream

While on World Cup duty with England, Rice admitted that he wants to play in the Champions League, further hinting at a transfer move: "One hundred per cent I want to play in the Champions League. For the last two or three years I’ve been saying that.

"I’ve been playing consistently well for my club and I feel like I really want to keep pushing. I see my friends here who are playing Champions League and for big trophies. You only get one career and at the end you want to look back at what you’ve won and the biggest games you’ve played in.”