Chelsea are set to be dealt a huge blow in their bid to bring Declan Rice back to Stamford Bridge.
But they are yet to act on their interest with West Ham said to be demanding around £100million for their star midfielder, a fee Chelsea may struggle to come up with as they prioritise a top striker, an area which is also likely to set them back more than £100million to strengthen this summer.
And in their hesitancy, Chelsea may be about to get beaten by one of their Premier League rivals.
That’s because The Athletic are reporting that both Manchester City and Manchester United are considering bids for Rice this summer.
The report claims both Manchester clubs are ‘actively considering respective moves for Rice and that they could be ahead of Chelsea given Marina Granovskaia has other priorities heading into the transfer window.
Though, the Manchester duo each have other holes to fill, too, with City needing to replace Sergio Aguero, who has joined Barcelona on a free transfer, and United looking to spend big to land Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.
Nevertheless, both are credited with a serious interest and both have the potential to scupper Chelsea’s summer plans.
The summer window is officially open and now the Blues can look to build on European glory and bolster the squad to push for Premier League supremacy.
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Rice was a big target of the Blues during Frank Lampard’s time at the club, and recent reports have claimed Thomas Tuchel is also very keen, speaking to staff about the potential of landing the Hammers star.
Though, it might be a question of what Chelsea need most this summer with Roman Abramovich unlikely to spend quite as much as last summer, when the Blues splashed out more than £250million to strengthen their squad.
Around £150million could be spent by the Blues, but with Erling Haaland or Harry Kane potentially costing that much, and other possible striker signings coming in at around £100million, a deal for Rice could be out of the question this summer.