Chelsea are believed to extremely keen to sign Declan Rice from West Ham this summer, with a £40m bid reportedly in the offing. However, it seems they don’t want to use him as a defensive midfielder, and are looking to convert him to a centre-back.
Chelsea may have already signed the perfect partner for Declan Rice if the West Ham star joins the club.
Former Blues academy player Rice is being strongly linked with a £40m switch to Stamford Bridge.
It’s thought that the Blues want to snap him up to play as a centre-back, with their current options seemingly not up to scratch.
And they already have the ideal man to pair him up with in the vastly experienced Thiago Silva.
The former PSG man would be the perfect mentor for Rice, and would be able to help him adapt to the change in position.
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It is common knowledge that Rice is a Chelsea fan, having grown up through their academy system before moving east to West Ham.
And the defensive player even revealed that he idolised the current Blues boss growing up.
“Obviously being a Chelsea fan, Joe Cole, Lamps [Frank Lampard] and JT [John Terry] were my idols,” he told Rio Ferdinand recently.
“It would only ever be Chelsea games that I was watching so them three were definitely up there.
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“I’ve always been a Chelsea fan since I was a kid, it’s just been in the family since my dad really.
“My dad used to go back in the 80s, the 90s, I don’t think there’s one person in my family who isn’t a Chelsea fan.”
Meanwhile, one man who knows what it’s like to play for both clubs is Joe Cole, who insists that it would be a huge blow to the Hammers to see Rice leave.
“It would be a big gamble to let him go because he is the most important player in that dressing room.
“We talk about what he is worth as an asset to the club financially but how much is it worth to stay in the Premier League?
“When you have got the back three and him and [Tomas] Soucek, and Noble to come in, all of a sudden you have got a nice solid base to build on there.
“We have talked about the disconnect between the ownership group and the fans and I think it will be a step too far if they let him go.
“I don’t know what’s in the lad’s heart or head, what does he want to do, but he is a fantastic player, a fantastic lad and a big asset to this club. He is so important to this West Ham team.”
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