West Ham chairman makes crucial Declan Rice admission amid interest from Arsenal, Manchester United and Bayern Munich

ACF Fiorentina v West Ham United FC - UEFA Europa Conference League Final 2022/23
Rice has been strongly linked with a move to Arsenal

West Ham United chairman David Sullivan has confirmed that midfielder Declan Rice will leave the club this summer. Rice helped the Hammers win the UEFA Europa Conference League in his final match for the club on Wednesday, June 7.

Rice joined West Ham as a youth player from Chelsea in 2014 and has since gone on to become a great at the club. Since his promotion to the first team in 2017, the Englishman has made 245 appearances for them, scoring 15 and assisting 13 goals.

While he was linked with an exit last summer as well, Sullivan has confirmed that he will finally leave the club in the upcoming window. He told talkSPORT after their Conference League final win over Fiorentina:

"I think it has to be. We promised him he could go. He set his heart on going. You can't ask for a man who has committed more to us this season. In due course, he has to get on and we have to get a replacement - or several replacements.
"It's not something we want to happen. We offered him £200,000-a-week 18 months ago. He turned it down. It's cost him £10 million to stay at West Ham in that time (in lost wages). And he wants to go. You can't keep a player who doesn't want to be there."

The West Ham chairman was also quizzed about whether offers have already started coming in for the midfielder. He replied:

"No. But I think the offers will start to come today. There are three or four clubs who have shown interest, but out of respect to West Ham, while we're still playing, you don't make offers for players. That's not the way decent clubs do things."

Arsenal are reportedly leading the race for Rice's signature, but the likes of Bayern Munich and Manchester United have also been linked.

West Ham overcome Fiorentina challenge to win Conference League

The Conference League final at the Eden Arena in Prague saw West Ham take the lead against Fiorentina in the 62nd minute through a Said Benrahma spot-kick.

The Italian side were quick to equalize as Giacomo Bonaventura scored five minutes later.

The game was heading towards extra time but Jarrod Bowen's left-footed strike in the 90th minute sealed the title for West Ham.

Rice addressed his future after the game, saying (via Sky Sports):

"I genuinely don't know what's happening at the minute. That is my honest answer. To read it myself [the speculation], it's actually getting quite boring. Who knows what is going to happen? It's flattering to be wanted by a lot of clubs but the badge on my chest is West Ham.
"I've still got two years left on my contract and ultimately it is up to the people above."

Rice still has two years left on his West Ham contract but seems to be heading towards an exit.

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Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee
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