Arsenal agree £105m deal to sign Declan Rice

Arsenal’s third proposal of £105 million will make Declan Rice the most expensive British transfer ever; Man City dropped interest after West Ham rejected a £90 million bid. 

The move is structured as a £100 million initial fee plus £5 million in performance-related add-ons.

The payment structure is still being debated between the two teams, but Rice is now free to discuss personal terms and consider having his medical.

Arsenal have previously had two club-record proposals rejected by the Irons: a £90 million bid that included a £75 million fee and £15 million in add-ons, and an initial offer said to be worth £80 million with add-ons.

The bid breaks Arsenal’s transfer record of £72 million paid to Lille for Nicolas Pepe in 2019. 

Rice has spent his whole professional career with West Ham, most recently leading the club to the Europa Conference League title.

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Mikel Arteta, who depended heavily on Thomas Partey, Granit Xhaka, and Martin Odegaard as midfielders last season, has been looking to bolster that position. He seemed to have found his top target.

Hammers chairman David Sullivan said a gentleman’s agreement meant Rice could leave despite having a year remaining on his contract, with the option to extend it by a further 12 months.

Rice joined West Ham’s academy as a teenager after leaving Chelsea, and he has been a constant since his breakout season in 2017-18. After Mark Noble retired last year, he took over as captain.

Last season, the 24-year-old played 50 games across all competitions for West Ham, finishing 14th in the Premier League before winning the Europa Conference League in Prague.

Rice has appeared in almost 200 games for West Ham and has played 41 matches for England since his debut in 2019.