Declan Rice’s future at West Ham United is in serious doubt as he has turned down a highly-lucrative contract at the London Stadium. A contract worth a total of £83 million pounds was snubbed by Rice as he considered moving to greener pastures.
The news comes after a superb season for the Hammers - one that has seen them challenge some of the Premier League’s elite clubs and reach the semi-finals of the Europa League. Under the guidance of David Moyes, Rice’s game has evolved from an intercepting defensive midfielder to a brilliant all-rounder - one who creates chances, runs with the ball, and scores goals.
One Of The Finest Midfielders
Rice, 23, is wanted by clubs all over Europe and his status as the lynchpin of this promising West Ham team has not gone unnoticed with Manchester United being long-time admirers of him due to his style of play and the perpetual midfield issues that have played the Red Devils for so many years.
The rise of Declan Rice began in 2019 when he started anchoring the midfield of a Hammers team battling relegation under Chilean manager Manuel Pellegrini. From there, Rice has gone on to become one of the Premier League’s finest midfielders and his performances for England during Euro 2020 were nothing short of superb.
West Ham have offered Rice an eight-year deal worth £200,000 a week - a contract that would make him the highest-paid player in the club’s history. Rice has turned down the offer and is, apparently, open to a move this summer.
I hope this doesn’t happen. Though West Ham can’t match Manchester United, Arsenal, or Manchester City for wages, their improvement as a footballing force is in large part due to his services. Seeing a player like Rice choose loyalty over money would provide a delightful, nostalgic throwback to the days where the badge was more important than the payslip.
Players Who Showed Loyalty
Alan Shearer, Steven Gerrard, Matt Le Tissier, and Ryan Giggs are all stand-up examples of players who stuck by their clubs through thick and thin. When bigger clubs came calling, they stood their ground and vowed loyalty to their respective fanbases, even if it meant sacrificing trophies and worldwide recognition in the process. If you visit Newcastle, Liverpool, and Southampton now, you’ll find legions of grateful fans who still hold their respective legends to high accounts.
That’s what being a captain is all about and a lesson Rice should be paying attention to if he wishes to cement his name in English football folklore. He could be the catalyst behind West Ham’s revival as one of England’s premier footballing teams - an opportunity worth far more than money or status.
Values In Football Have Gone
What’s happened to old-school values in football? If you ask me, there is far too much money in the game nowadays and any semblance of the hard-working, fight-to-the-death attitude our game was based on has been stamped out. Perhaps Rice can show the world what he’s truly made of and stay with the Hammers for his whole career. He has the potential to be one of this generation’s finest midfielders, and I can’t think of a better place for him to showcase his skills than in front of the patriotic West Ham faithful.
Declan Rice should do the right thing and stay at West Ham. No amount of money should make him reconsider his future and, if it does, then he’s not the player or man I thought he was - and I’m sure my opinion of him is one he values.
I don’t dislike you yet, Declan, but I’ll see what you do over the summer before judging.
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