Arsenal transfer news: Danny Murphy really thinks Declan Rice will sign next summer
Speculation surrounding Rice was ramped up during the World Cup, after he admitted his desire to play in the Champions League.
Despite back-to-back continental campaigns, the Hammers will need to win the Europa Conference League to stay in Europe next season.
The Gunners look set to finally return to the Champions League this season, and could go one better and win the league.
Mikel Arteta’s project at The Emirates is one of the most exciting in the country right now.
It will certainly be tempting for Rice, and Murphy has suggested he’ll believe he can break straight into the first team.
Murphy thinks Rice will sign for Arsenal
“I don’t think that matters,” Murphy said.
“If Arsenal are on the trajectory they’re on, and they have the ambition to move forward and be regular contenders in the Premier League and start playing Champions League football every season, you can’t rely on three midfielders.
“My hunch really at the moment is Arsenal. I think deep down when you’re from a certain area, you might want to stay around your family who support you.
“Maybe that Arsenal thing has become much more attractive, and actually what you said at the beginning, he probably looks at that midfield and thinks, ‘I can get in that team comfortably’.”
The £70m-rated midfielder is likely to be linked with plenty of top clubs this summer.
His England midfield partner Jude Bellingham appears to be in the same boat, with Liverpool closely linked with the teenager.
Ally McCoist has suggested that Arsenal will also be in the equation to sign Bellingham, but Rice appears to be their priority.
The 24-year-old could fit into either Partey or Xhaka’s roles at Arsenal.
He’s a phenomenal defensive midfielder, expertly shielding what has admittedly been a leaky West Ham defence.
Rice can also carry the ball brilliantly, and would fill Xhaka’s position well, particularly as he covers for Oleksandr Zinchenko at left-back in advanced areas.
Whether Rice will sign for Arsenal not is likely to be one of the big talking points of the summer.
There’ll be plenty of Gunners fans who will hope they can get a deal over the line.