Arsenal are set to make a second bid for Declan Rice, but it is expected to fall short of West Ham United’s £100 million asking price, according to sources at football.london.
The Gunners had their initial offer of £80 million plus at least £10 million in add-ons rejected by West Ham last week.
However, Arsenal are determined to secure Rice’s services and are keen to reach an agreement with the London club now that the player has completed his international duties with England.
Despite interest from other clubs, Rice has reportedly expressed his preference for a move to Arsenal, which has been noted by other parties involved.
Arsenal, similar to their approach with the Mykhailo Mudryk transfer situation, are aiming to avoid excessive fees and the added pressure that comes with them. However, West Ham remains steadfast in their demand for an English record fee for Rice.
They are open to a deal structured with achievable add-ons and a significant portion of the guaranteed fee paid upfront, rather than the staggered payment over six years proposed by Arsenal in their previous offer.
Midfield reinforcement has been a top priority for Arsenal, as they conceded 42 goals in the Premier League last season.
The absence of William Saliba and Thomas Partey’s dip in form contributed to their defensive vulnerabilities. While Rice would bolster their midfield, the club also recognizes the need for further additions in other areas.
Arsenal had an initial bid of £55 million for Kai Havertz rejected, indicating their ambition to strengthen their attacking options. Additionally, the Gunners are exploring the potential signings of Romeo Lavia and Jurrien Timber, along with showing interest in Real Valladolid’s Ivan Fresneda.
As negotiations continue, Arsenal will aim to find a compromise with West Ham for Rice, even if their second bid falls below the £100 million mark.
The Gunners are determined to address their squad’s weaknesses and secure the services of their desired targets as they prepare for the upcoming season.