Declan Rice’s comments indicate Manchester United should change priorities

Declan Rice will likely be the latest English talent to be targeted by the Premier League’s big hitters this summer, with reports already linking the midfielder with a West Ham departure.

The 23-year-old still has just over two years left on his contract at the London Stadium but is unlikely to see him due to heightened interest in him. Jack Grealish faced a similar situation last year after playing at Euro 2020 after an impressive season at Aston Villa.

He was eventually snapped up by Manchester City for a British record fee of £100m. But latest reports claim West Ham are hoping for £150m in exchange for Rice.

READ MORE: The five out-of-contract United players, including Paul Pogba, who are set to leave

Although this fee may seem exorbitant, it would not be beyond the reach of Manchester United‘s finances. After all, the club – who have long named Rice as a player of interest – shelled out a combined total of around £125m for Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo last summer.

The reality is that West Ham will surely be unable to attract that kind of fee. Nonetheless, what should worry United most are Rice’s recent comments during the latest episode of Gary Neville’s The Overlap. He’s made it clear what he hopes to achieve in his career, and that includes Champions League success.

Speaking to former United defender Neville, he said: “Me as a football fan, and also as a player, I want to win the best. I want to win the Premier League – I want to lift this trophy. .

“I want to win the Champions League too. I want to win the FA Cup and the League Cup, even England stuff. I want to win everything.”

United are now outside the contenders for Champions League qualification this term, currently sixth and four points behind fourth-placed Arsenal, who are one game less. A finish outside the top four may not bode well for United in pursuit of their primary goals.

Moreover, West Ham still have a chance to qualify for the Champions League. They are in the quarter-finals of the Europa League, where the winner of the competition earns a place in next season’s elite European competition.

But if Rice decides the way forward in his career is to move away from the London Stadium, then Chelsea could be the team he plays for next – if ownership of the club goes well by the summer. The Blues are also interested in the player they dropped from their academy at the age of 14 and United may find they are unable to attract Rice.

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