Declan Rice, the West Ham skipper, is set to reveal his preferred destination this summer as Arsenal and Manchester United compete for his signature. Although Rice is focused on ending the season strongly with West Ham, who have the Europa League Conference final against Fiorentina to look forward to, he reportedly wants to remain in London and commit the peak years of his career to Arsenal. The Gunners are preparing to offer £90 million for the England international, but that bid will fall at least £10 million short of West Ham’s valuation. Manchester United, who are also keen to strengthen their midfield during the summer window, are likely to submit a rival offer with the Hammers keen to instigate a bidding war. Rice hopes to prevent that scenario by making it known that he has eyes only for Arsenal, where he has been earmarked as a replacement for Granit Xhaka. The long-serving Switzerland international is set to join Bayer Leverkusen, while the futures of Thomas Partey and Albert Sambi Lokonga are also uncertain. Despite Rice’s reported stance, former Arsenal star Ray Parlour fears United’s greater financial pulling power may ultimately prove decisive in the race to sign Rice.
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