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Man Utd’s Creative Bid for West Ham Star

Declan Rice at the Centre of a United, Arsenal and West Ham Triangle

As reported by Jason Burt of The Telegraph, the transfer tug-of-war heating up English football revolves around West Ham’s stalwart, Declan Rice. While Arsenal have long been in the race to secure Rice, the latest twist reveals Man Utd’s intention to join the fray with an innovative player-plus-cash offer.

The Chessboard of Transfers

Declan Rice, the midfield linchpin for both England and West Ham, has been the subject of intense speculation over a summer exit. The Hammers have reluctantly accepted Rice’s departure, but only if the price is right. The opening salvo from Arsenal – a bid of £90 million (£75 million upfront and £15 million spread over five years) – was promptly rebuffed by the Hammers on Tuesday. However, Man Utd’s entry into the ring has significantly complicated the proceedings.

Man Utd’s Player-plus-Cash Gambit

Man Utd’s counter-strategy is an inventive player-plus-cash proposition potentially involving Harry Maguire or Scott McTominay. The Red Devils’ willingness to offload these players is well-known, with West Ham particularly interested in midfielder McTominay. David Moyes, West Ham’s manager, has not hidden his admiration for the Scottish player or Maguire.

However, roadblocks could appear in this potential swap. While McTominay’s willingness to switch sides is unclear, Maguire’s lofty wage expectations could derail any transfer to the East London club.

Arsenal vs Man Utd: The Duel Continues

Despite Man Utd’s newly unveiled strategy, it’s still most likely that Rice will end up at the Emirates. Arsenal are expected to table a third offer, and there are whispers that Rice favours a move to the Gunners. But the Red Devils are not out of the race yet and are keen on Rice, provided they can engineer a deal within their tight summer budget.

Adding another layer of complexity, Man City have also entered the frame. Fresh off their Champions League triumph, the Mancunians have the financial might to outbid their competitors.

The Waiting Game for West Ham

The Hammers are playing a tactical waiting game. They’re ready to part ways with their 24-year-old skipper, but they won’t be rushed. The genuine interest from both Manchester clubs is beneficial for West Ham, giving them the luxury of waiting for the right deal.

Meanwhile, United are mulling the use of McTominay as a makeweight for a potential deal. There is a desire for Erik ten Hag, United’s manager, to reshape his squad. Similarly, Moyes’ interest in Maguire remains, although securing the 30-year-old defender, who’s also on Tottenham’s radar, could be more convoluted.

Should West Ham receive their demanded £100 million fee for Rice, James Ward-Prowse of Southampton and Leicester City’s Harvey Barnes are among their targets. However, a player-plus-cash deal from United could reshuffle the deck.

As of now, the exact valuation of McTominay or Maguire and how much they would contribute towards Rice’s transfer fee remain unknown. United are yet to open negotiations with West Ham.

The most considerable hurdle for Arsenal, on the other hand, remains their payment plan for the record-breaking fee. As the summer transfer saga unfolds, only time will reveal where Rice’s allegiance will ultimately lie.

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