This is the second consecutive summer that Declan Rice is being strongly linked with a move to Chelsea.
The West Ham United midfielder, who was one of England’s standout performers in their Euro 2020 campaign where they reached the final, is thought to be admired by Thomas Tuchel.
However, the Blues could face two huge stumbling blocks in any possible transfer and they both involve money.
The report claims Rice is demanding a whopping £200,000-a-week, which would make him the club’s highest earner, according to The National News.
Rice is thought to be open to the prospect of leaving the east London club, but West Ham are determined to keep hold of the England international.
So much so that the Hammers have reportedly placed an £80million price tag on his head, which could fend off any potential suitors such as Chelsea, as well as Manchester United – who are also thought to be keen.
The Blues equalled their transfer record last summer when Roman Abramovich splashed out £72m to bring Kai Havertz to the club, and it looks as if they would need to smash that fee this time if they are to sign Rice.
The report says £80m, but West Ham boss David Moyes claimed earlier this year that he would not sell the midfielder even if a £100m bid came in.
When asked about the reported £80m fee in March, Moyes replied: “I don’t agree with the owners that Declan Rice is a £100m footballer. Far, far more than £100m. Far, far more.
“I look at the players who have joined some clubs from overseas and come in and nowhere near had the impact Declan Rice would have.
“I certainly wouldn’t put a price on it. You can decide which figure you want to put on it but I wouldn’t be sanctioning anything like that, that’s for sure.”
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Rice was released by Chelsea when he was just a teenager which prompted him to move across London to West Ham, where he has shone in recent years.
The 22-year-old, who made his debut for the Hammers in 2016, has now established himself as a staple for Gareth Southgate in the England team, keeping the likes of Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson out of the side.