Chelsea hopeful of securing deal for £44.55 million ace

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Chelsea have enjoyed a ridiculously good summer.

After exceeding expectations with a top four finish last term, few would have predicted the way that the Blues would kick on last term.

With a transfer ban over their heads, Frank Lampard used the season to develop some of the club's young talent as he looked to build a team based on youth and enthusiasm.

However now it seems that the brief has changed.

Chelsea have spent around £200million on new signings this summer with the likes of Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell and Kai Havertz already joining the club.

With Edouard Mendy seemingly on the way into the club, it seems that Chelsea are hoping to mount a serious challenge to Liverpool and Manchester City this term.

But if the amount spent already wasn't enough, there's still murmurs that the club could be looking to splash the cash in the coming weeks.

One player who has been heavily linked is Declan Rice.

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The West Ham man has been linked with an £80 million move to Stamford Bridge this summer, and discussing the move, Chelsea reporter Simon Johnson has suggested that it's a deal that could run until the final knockings of the transfer window.

Writing for The Athletic, Johnson wrote: "The Athletic has been told Lampard wants a defensive midfielder.

As has been well-documented, the player Lampard craves above all others is Declan Rice."

Johnson added: "Chelsea have been discussing other options in case a move for Rice fails to bear fruit.

"West Ham’s £80 million asking price is scaring the west Londoners off, although they can offer his fellow England midfielder Ross Barkley in exchange to try to lower the fee.

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"West Ham will also be reluctant to sell such an asset so soon after the furore caused by Grady Diangana’s recent departure to West Bromwich Albion.

"For anything to take place, Rice may have to try to force the issue, a step he may be reluctant to take given his relationship with the West Ham fans."

GIVEMESPORT'S Phil Spencer says...

This transfer saga looks set to rumble on and on.

Valued at £44.55 million by Transfermarkt, Declan Rice is a player who looks destined to play at the highest level at some point in his career.

Given his affinity with Chelsea, it seems like that it's a deal that will happen.

Whether that happens this summer, in January or next summer, the Blues seem to be determined to get their man and with the money that they have in their locker it seems that it's a case of when rather than if.

West Ham will be determined not to lose their star man, but if the right offer comes in they may find it hard to resist.

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