Arsenal hope Jack Wilshere to convince Declan Rice to ditch Chelsea, Man Utd IG News

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Jack Wilshere spent almost two decades at Arsenal and still works for the club

Jack Wilshere spent almost two decades at Arsenal and still works for the club (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal are confident of signing Declan Rice this summer and believe club hero Jack Wilshere will persuade the West Ham star to join the Gunners over Chelsea and Manchester United.

While Arsenal set their sights on a first Premier League title since 2004, Mikel Arteta is already planning ahead for this summer transfer window and wants at least four new players to arrive at the Emirates.

Arteta is keen to strengthen his squad ahead of Arsenal’s return to the Champions League next season, with at least one central midfielder expected to be signed.

Arsenal submitted several unsuccessful bids for Brighton’s Moises Caedo in January and will look to revive their interest in the Ecuador international at the end of the season.

West Ham and England star Rice is Arsenal’s top target, and the Gunners are prepared to spend around £80million to bring the 24-year-old to north London.

Rice will almost certainly leave West Ham at the end of the season, having rejected several offers to extend his contract, and also attracting interest from Chelsea and Manchester United.

Chelsea first expressed an interest in signing Rice – who was at the Stamford Bridge academy before being released at the age of 15 – when Frank Lampard was in charge.

Declan Rice is expected to leave West Ham at the end of the season

Declan Rice is expected to leave West Ham at the end of the season (Picture: Getty)

The Blues, who have endured a disappointing season under Graham Potter, are looking for a replacement for Jorginho and a successor to N’Golo Kante, despite Spending over £100million on fellow midfielder Enzo Fernandez in January.

Manchester United could also make a move for Rice, despite signing five-time Champions League winner Casemiro from Real Madrid last summer.

Arsenal are not overly concerned with interest from Chelsea and Man United in the West Ham captain, and believe Rice’s link with former Gunners star Wilshere puts him in a strong position.

According to the Daily Mail, Wilshere and Rice became close when the former was at the end of his career at West Ham and remain friends with Arsenal believing Wilshere can now help his former club in the transfer market.

Former England midfielder Wilshere spent almost two decades at Arsenal – first as an academy star and then a first-team regular – and still serves as head coach of the U18 side at the Emirates.

West Ham impressed last season – briefly challenging for a top-four finish and reaching the Europa League semi-finals – but have won only six of their 24 league games to be dragged into the relegation battle.

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