West Ham will ‘BLOCK Chelsea’s move for Declan Rice this summer’ but are keeping tabs on Emerson
West Ham are determined to keep hold of star midfielder Declan Rice amid interest from Chelsea as the Hammers plot a move for Blues full back Emerson.
David Moyes’ side got the 2020-21 campaign off to a bad start as the Hammers lost their Premier League opener to Newcastle at the London Stadium on Saturday.
Rice, 21, featured in midfield but has been strongly linked with a move to Chelsea this summer window, with Frank Lampard an admirer of the midfielder who was released by the club at 14.
The England international has been identified as a possible defensive option, with Lampard interested in converting the midfielder to a centre half.
However, The Athletic reports that West Ham will block all attempts to prise their star away from the club, with the hierarchy insistent on not selling the 21-year-old under any circumstances.
Instead, full focus is on bringing players into the club, with manager Moyes determined to bolster his defence following their 2-0 defeat by Newcastle last weekend.
Targets have been identified at full back and centre back, and West Ham are rumoured to be interested in Chelsea defender Emerson, as well as Arsenal’s Sead Kolasinac and Mykola Matviyenko of Shakhtar Donetsk.
The Hammers have money to invest following the sale of Grady Diangana to West Bromwich Albion earlier this window. West Ham recouped £20m for the academy product but his sale angered figures inside the club, including captain Mark Noble.
In response to Diangana’s move to their Premier League rivals, Noble tweeted: ‘As captain of this football club I’m gutted, angry and sad that Grady has left, great kid with a great future!!!!!’
Rice ‘liked’ Noble’s tweet in a show of support from the Chelsea target, whilst Jack Wilshere had a sly dig at the club hierarchy for the decision.
On a post that the 22-year-old shared thanking West Ham for his time with the club, the former Arsenal man did not hold back as he commented: ‘Go and do your thing in a club that respects you. Big player with a big future.’
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