What Chelsea’s Frenkie de Jong Man Utd transfer hijack means for future Declan Rice deal
Chelsea pursuit of Barcelona star Frenkie de Jong is one that could have multiple implications for various players like Declan Rice and Jorginho respectively. So far this summer, the Blues’ focus has been on improving their defence and attack with Kalidou Koulibaly and Raheem Sterling the two statement signings to date.
Marc Cucurella is set to join that has as his £63million transfer from Brighton is seth to go through imminently. But the midfield area is also an area despite the congested numbers that is set to receive some backing as amid tentative links to the likes of Matheus Nunes and Adrien Rabiot respectively, new owner Todd Boehly has his eyes firmly on De Jong.
The 25-year-old is currently reluctant to leave the Camp Nou amid a dispute over deferred wages. Champions League football is something Barca’s No.21 finds attractive which could give Chelsea the all-important advantage over the Red Devils if the midfielder was to accept that there is no way back for him in Spain.
Whilst the wait goes on to see what De Jong eventually decides to do before September 1 with the Chelsea option potentially coming to fruition after the latest round of talks, another question is now what happens to Declan Rice?
Amid rumours of a gentleman’s agreement to leave next summer, the truth is that not qualifying for European football in 2022/23 could seal the Three Lions international’s future. This is the view of West Ham legend Tony Cottee. He said via The Mirror: “West Ham have done well to keep Declan this season.
It was important that they stamped their authority and put a ridiculous price tag on his head. If you don’t pay £120million for Harry Kane, you’re not going to pay £150million for Declan. But the further into his contract he is, the cheaper he will be.
“This time next year, you might be able to pick him up for £90million or £100million, which is more realistic for the big boys. I can honestly say Declan is good enough to play for any of the top six clubs in this country, as well as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, PSG… name any club in Europe, he is good enough to play there.
“I hope West Ham can keep him – but I fear the worst, as all West Ham fans do. The only way they can potentially keep him is for West Ham to get into the Champions League for next season, and I think that could be a step too far for them this year. I wouldn’t be surprised if, in a year’s time, he’ll be lining up for his new club.
“West Ham fans will wish him well because he’s given his heart for the club and he wants to win something. That was ultimately why I left West Ham for Everton 35 years ago – you get frustrated that the club aren’t winning anything.
And when he goes to the England squad and talks to the Man City or Liverpool boys, and they’re talking about winning stuff and playing in the Champions League, that’s what he’ll want to do.
“He’s not getting any younger. He’ll be 24 this time next year and he’ll want to play Champions League football. Unless West Ham finish in the top four, I think we’ll see Declan playing for somebody else next year.”
football.london understands that the £150million asking price deterred Boehly from making an attempt at signing the England star this season. It is expected that a move for De Jong will not alter Rice plans for next summer. There is even talk that Jorginho could move to Juventus on loan as a consequence of the De Jong deal.
It’s important to also remember that both Jorginho and N’Golo Kante could be into the final stretch of their Blues careers with only a year remaining on their contracts.
Conor Gallagher is been given 2022/23 to impress Tuchel, but failure to do so may lead to a tough transfer decision having to be made next season. There are many circumstances that could lead to a fresh approach for West Ham’s star man next summer, even if a big money move for the much sought-after Barca star was to come off.