Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is eyeing a move for West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice, as reported by The Times.
The 21-year-old has been a key figure in the Hammers midfielder over the past two seasons and it seems like the Blues want to sign him during the upcoming summer transfer window as a replacement to Jorginho(who is being eyed by Juventus).
The report claims: “Chelsea have stepped up their interest in Declan Rice as Frank Lampard aims to strengthen his defence this summer.
“It is understood that the Chelsea head coach has identified the 21-year-old West Ham United player as a potential centre half who could help to solve their defensive frailties.
“Rice is a boyhood Chelsea fan and spent seven years in the club’s academy before being released at the age of 14. He is predominantly a midfielder but has impressed when used by West Ham as a defender and Lampard sees him as a successor to John Terry.
“Chelsea’s vulnerability was exposed in West Ham’s victory over Lampard’s team at the London Stadium last week when Tomas Soucek dominated their defence. Lampard has long been an admirer.”
Can Chelsea get their hands on Declan Rice?
Danny Murphy has admitted that despite his love for West Ham United, Declan Rice will not be able to resist a move to his once boyhood club, thereby clearly putting Chelsea in the driver’s seat.
Murphy said on White and Sawyer, as per talkSPORT: “I don’t think it is easy to articulate the importance of supporting a club when you’re a child and then having the opportunity to play for them.
“I’ve been in that position and can you imagine being in that position after your dream being shattered?
“And then having the opportunity again!”
With Maurizio Sarri so eager to reunite with Jorginho next season, there’s every chance that Chelsea might cash in on him. And if the Italian leaves then Frank Lampard will undoubtedly make a move for the Hammers midfielder in the summer.
But what remains to be seen is if David Moyes will be willing to part ways with Rice or not?