West Ham manager David Moyes believes Declan Rice is worth more than £100m and is a future England captain.
Rice will have two years left on his contract at the end of this season, and West Ham have extra negotiating power in the shape of an option to extend by an additional 12 months.
Manchester United are reportedly interested in Rice, but are said to be facing competition from Chelsea and Manchester City for the England international, who has left his agent to be represented by his dad.
Asked whether Rice is worth more than £100m, Moyes, after a long pause, replied: „Yeah.
„I think I’ve said everything there is to say about Declan. He’s a really important player for West Ham, he’s someone who we value greatly and you can see what he means to the team.
„He’s a really good individual and we’re enjoying having him.“
Rice scored a last-gasp equaliser in West Ham’s FA Cup extra-time win at Kidderminster Harriers on Saturday, after coming on as a substitute at the non-league side to save the Hammers from an embarrassing fourth-round exit.
The 23-year-old has been in fine form for the Irons this season as they continue to chase a top-four finish, as well as push for silverware in the FA Cup and the Europa League.
Rice was also a key performer for England last summer as they agonisingly missed out on Euro 2020 glory and Moyes believes the midfielder, who wears the Hammers armband when Mark Noble is not playing, could one day captain the Three Lions.
„As an individual, he’s a really improving young man who’s gaining a lot of experience,“ the Scot said. „He’s getting better and he learns an awful lot from Mark Noble.
„He [Rice] should look at Harry Kane and Harry Maguire and all of those senior players he’s involved with for England, and take as much from them as he can, because in the future I’ve got no doubt he’s got a great chance of going on to be a future England captain.
„We’re really pleased to have him and he’s an impressive young man.“
Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson:
„I think Declan Rice will be gone this summer. I think it will be Man Utd, if you’re Man Utd you’ve got to break the bank.
„From a holding midfield player, he is bombing forward, scoring goals, getting chances, and making goals. I can’t talk highly enough of the lad, I think he’s been absolutely phenomenal.
„Chelsea could go and get him but they could do without him. They’ve still got Mateo Kovacic, Jorginho, N’Golo Kante – three unbelievable midfield players and they dominate football matches.
„But you look at Man Utd and the midfield isn’t strong enough to win anything really.“
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