Declan Rice tipped to snub Manchester United with West Ham backed to ‘finish above’ them

Declan Rice has been told he is better staying at West Ham than orchestrating a move to Manchester United.

The England international has been linked with an Old Trafford switch with the Reds keen to bolster their midfielder options this summer with the likes of Paul Pogba set to leave. Chelsea, who released the 23-year-old from their academy in his younger days, are also keeping tabs.

However, both clubs will have to combat the huge £150m asking price the Hammers are rumoured to want for Rice, a figure that would be a British transfer record if secured. But Carlton Cole has suggested that the player would benefit more from staying at West Ham than moving to United with a gigantic price tag hanging over his head.

READ MORE: Harry Kane could prove a test of Manchester United transfer strategy this summer

He told Sportsmail: “Where is he going? I just can’t see him going anywhere and [clubs] affording the price. I don’t think Chelsea can do it at the moment for obvious reasons for this season.

“Where else is he going to go? Man United? No, they aren’t in a good place at the moment either.

“Why go to Man United when you can stay at West Ham? We’ll finish above Man United and what are you gonna say then?

“Nothing, you can’t just go and get our best players. We’ll finish above Man United and no one is going to say anything. He is gonna stay at the best club possible.

“Especially if they bring somebody else in that compliments his style, you’ve got [Tomas] Soucek there, bring another striker in and all of this conversation will be done at the end of the season.”

West Ham are currently two points behind United in seventh having played a game more. Cole noted that Rice does not seem to be the type to chase after the pay cheque, which has been shown by his loyalty to West Ham since his breakthrough.

He added: “I don’t see a reason why he should want to leave. He is not the sort of guy that is going to be chasing after money, otherwise he’d have done that by now.

“He knows his home truths. He knows exactly what he needs to do and that is play regular football, and he is doing that at West Ham and he is the main man.”

Former West Ham defender Julian Dicks praised Rice for his attitude and called on his former club to invest in the squad if they are to convince their lynchpin to stay.

he said: “He’s a great kid. For me, it is about Mr (David) Gold and Mr (David) Sullivan investing in the team for next season, because it can’t be about money for these players now.

“It is about moving clubs to win trophies so West Ham need to invest and invest heavily and bring in some top, top players to build a team around Declan and one or two others. If they are willing to do that, I can see Declan staying. He loves the club, so now it is about winning trophies.”

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