Manchester United could very well make a few signings in the January transfer window based on how their season is going, and one of them might be West Ham United’s young defensive midfielder Declan Rice.
Rice, who has become a key player in the Hammers team as well as an England international, is touted to become one of the best in his position in the Premier League.
As per Goal, as well as other reports in England, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could make a move for the 20-year-old in January for a fee of around £90-£100 million.
Rice came through the ranks at Chelsea before joining West Ham in 2014, and has since gone on to become a regular for Manuel Pellegrini’s side.
The youngster has played in over 70 games for the Hammers in all competitions since, and has become a very important player for the London side. He signed a contract with the Hammers last year, with his current contract expiring in 2024.
Rice also earned a call-up to the England national team earlier this year and has gone on to make five appearances for Gareth Southgate’s side.
How Declan Rice can help Solskjaer move forward
Manchester United need to sign more than one central midfielder in the next two transfer windows as they look very weak in the middle of the park. Following the departures of Marouane Fellaini and Ander Herrera, United’s options in the middle of the park have not been good enough.
And with the future of Paul Pogba up in the air (H/T Mirror), the Red Devils need to strengthen in the middle of the park, and soon.
Rice fits Solskjaer’s profile of the kind of player that he wants to bring to Manchester United as he is young and British, and has the potential to be very good.
The 20-year-old midfielder is a strong tackler, who sits deep in midfield, breaks play up, and is a defensive screen to the back four. He has averaged 3.8 tackles this season in the Premier League, while he has also been strong in interceptions, averaging 2.3 interceptions per game this season.
Rice is also a neat passer of the ball, averaging 46.6 passes per game, but his passes are mostly to his defenders or fellow central midfielders deep in midfield, rather than further forward.
United strengthened the backline in the last transfer window and the signing of Rice would make them even stronger in defence, and would be worth the massive outlay that the Hammers are demanding.