West Ham United are currently struggling to tie down teen sensation Declan Rice to a new contract at the London Stadium. The Telegraph reported last month that the 19-year-old was offered a basic £15,000-a-week to sign a new deal at West Ham. That was also supplemented by a £20,000 Premier League starting bonus and a £5,000-a-week basic wage every time he started 15 games for the club.
Such an offer should not be shirked at for a player who has played just over 30 times in the Premier League.
West Ham are hopeful of finalising a new deal with Rice over the international break but are right to be cautious about overpaying the youngster too soon.
The reason why is made clear by the example of Reece Oxford.
When he burst onto the scene it immediately became clear that West Ham had a talent on their hands. However, contract talks with the England youth star were similarly difficult. Then, on his 18th birthday, the youngster finally committed his future to the club amid interest from Arsenal, Manchester City, and Manchester United.
West Ham ended up handing him a reported £20,000-a-week deal with less incentive to Rice’s. The end result has been a youngster picking up a handsome wage, but failing to meet the standard necessary to play in the first-team. Now, the Hammers have struggled to get rid of the one-time wonderkid, who is captaining their under-23 side.
West Ham must ensure Rice is tied down to a new deal. Considering the player’s recent international conflict with the Republic of Ireland it is clear he is strong-willed and has similarly tough representation. So ensuring West Ham get the best deal for Rice to continue his current progression will be tough.
But Oxford acts as a reminder of what giving a youngster too much too young might do. West Ham are right to be cautious not to make the same mistake again.