Former Premier League footballer Dean Windass has issued some bold declarations concerning where Declan Rice would fit in at Chelsea.
The Hammers man has recently been sidelined with a knee injury sustained while away on international duty with England, but has otherwise looked to possess a natural fitness.
Claiming that Rice would ‘easily’ walk into Chelsea’s team, Windass held nothing back in a glowing endorsement of the Irons stalwart’s capabilities.
Speaking to Football FanCast, Windass claimed: “I think he’s a Chelsea sort of type and it’s easy because he wouldn’t have to move house. He’s been at West Ham since the Academies, he’s a London lad, it’s not going to take him much to move across to Stamford Bridge.
“He’s a young lad, English. He’d easily get into Chelsea’s team. He’s a bit like Makelele. He sits in front of the back-four, gives the ball to people that can play, so I can see that happening.
“I can’t see Declan Rice being at West Ham. £70m-80m off the top of my head. Why not? He’s playing for England, he’s young.”
Valued at £54 million by Transfermarkt, Rice will still have three years left to run on his current deal in the summer – with West Ham retaining the option to extend his deal by a further year.
Consequentially, previous claims from David Moyes that potential suitors would have to fork out ‘Bank of England’ levels of money to lure Rice away may have some credence to them.
Chelsea – who used to have Rice on their books at youth level – and Manchester United have been linked as interested suitors in the home-grown talent in recent months.
However, Windass’ fine observation of Rice’s quality and his contractual details render him as an asset to which West Ham hold all the cards.