Rice has put in a number of impressive performances for West Ham this season, which has resulted in him being linked with moves to Manchester United and Chelsea.
According to the Mirror, Rice has told his friends he'd prefer to stay in London and join Chelsea. Rice is said to feel like he's got unfinished business at Chelsea, who he left earlier in his career.
This could come as a blow to Manchester United, who have been courting Rice for quite some time now. United have struggled to find a ball-playing central midfielder in the mould of Michael Carrick since he retired in 2018.
The Red Devils signed Nemanja Matic in 2017 in an attempt to replace Carrick. The Serbian has had an up and down time at United and turns 33 next year.
Despite having the likes of Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes, Fred, Scott McTominay, Donny van de Beek, and Matic, Solskjaer is reportedly still keen on Rice.
Chelsea on the other hand, are actively looking to sign a top-quality central midfielder to partner with N'Golo Kante.
Kante has been partnered with Jorginho, and Mateo Kovacic in the heart of midfield in recent weeks. However, with Jorginho's lack of pace and physicality, Lampard is desperate to sign Declan Rice.
Rice has enhanced his reputation as one of the best midfielders in the Premier League this season. West Ham are currently in tenth place in the league table, largely thanks to his performances.
The club have ruled out the possibility of letting their star midfielder leave in January.
Declan Rice prefers a move to Chelsea over Manchester United
Declan Rice reportedly has his heart set on a move to Chelsea. The former Chelsea youth-product has remained close with Blues star Mason Mount, and would relish the chance to player under his childhood icon Frank Lampard.
"Dec has been flattered by interest in him but he doesn't see himself moving to Manchester. It's obvious where he'd like his next move to be," a source was quoted as saying.
West Ham, however, will not let go of their star player for cheap. Rice has been valued at £80 million by the Hammers, a fee that would make him one of the most expensive players in the Premier League.Published 10 Jan 2021, 17:20 IST