Arsenal Completes Record-Breaking £105m Signing Of Declan Rice From West HamArsenal has made a significant move in the transfer market by securing the services of England midfielder Declan Rice from West Ham United in a historic deal worth £105 million.
This transfer fee sets a new record for a transfer between two British clubs, surpassing the previous record of £72 million paid by Arsenal for Nicolas Pepe from Lille in 2019.
However, Rice’s signing falls just short of the British transfer record of £106.8 million, which Chelsea paid for midfielder Enzo Fernandez from Benfica in January.
The 24-year-old Rice, who captained West Ham, has signed a five-year contract with Arsenal, valid until 2028, with an option for an additional year.
He will don the No. 41 shirt for his new club. Rice’s move to the Emirates Stadium marks the end of his impressive ten-year tenure at West Ham, where he progressed from a youth-team player to become the club captain.
During his time at West Ham, Rice made 245 appearances and recently led the team to victory in the Europa Conference League final, securing their first trophy in 43 years.
The £105 million deal for Rice is structured as an initial payment of £100 million, which will be distributed over 24 months, with an additional £5 million in add-ons.
These add-ons include £1 million each time Arsenal qualifies for the UEFA Champions League and Rice starts in 60 percent of the games.
Expressing his excitement about the move, Rice acknowledged the allure of joining a club like Arsenal and his belief in manager Mikel Arteta’s vision for the team.
Rice stated, “In football, amazing opportunities arise. Big clubs, like Arsenal, have come for me, and it’s really hard to turn down. I really believe in what Mikel is building here and the squad he’s assembling. I’m really looking forward to the future with Arsenal.”
Rice also emphasized his hunger for success and the challenge of helping Arsenal return to their former glory. He expressed confidence in Arteta’s ability to elevate his game and guide him to new heights.
Arteta, pleased with the signing, emphasized Rice’s exceptional abilities and track record in the Premier League and with the England national team.
The Arsenal manager believes Rice will contribute significant quality to the squad and has the potential to achieve great success at the club.
The sporting director, Edu, also commended Rice’s abilities and highlighted his integration into Arsenal’s strategy of nurturing young, talented players.
While West Ham confirmed Rice’s departure without explicitly mentioning Arsenal in their statement, it was a conscious decision made in accordance with the player’s wishes.
Rice penned an open letter to West Ham fans, expressing his gratitude for the club and his ambition to play at the highest level. He acknowledged that his loyalties must now lie with his new club but promised to give his all whenever he wears the Arsenal shirt.
West Ham’s joint-chairman, David Sullivan, shared his regret at Rice’s departure but acknowledged the club’s pride in playing a significant role in the player’s development.
Sullivan clarified that West Ham had attempted to retain Rice’s services by offering improved, long-term contracts but ultimately respected his desire for a new challenge.
As Rice embarks on this new chapter in his career, West Ham manager David Moyes expressed his appreciation for the midfielder’s contributions to the club and emphasized the team’s commitment to building upon their recent success and nurturing young talent from their renowned academy.