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West Ham boosted in bid to keep Declan Rice as Guillem Balague confirms Manchester City want £65mil Rodri

West Ham United have received a huge boost in their hopes of keeping hold of star man Declan Rice.

Rice has been a Premier League sensation this season.

His form has made him a fully fledged England international as well as one of the first names on Manuel Pellegrini’s teamsheet.

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Rice on Pep’s summer shopping list

Rice has also attracted the attention of some top clubs including Manchester City (MEN).

So meteoric has Rice’s rise been he is reportedly valued at £70million plus.

Pep Guardiola has reportedly had scouts monitor the season-long performance of four players including Wolves star Ruben Neves and Rice as he looks for an heir to Fernandinho (Sky Sports).

He won’t fail to have been impressed with the West Ham midfielder’s quality and potential.

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Boost for Hammers as City switch attention to Spaniard

But the Hammers have been boosted after Spanish football expert Guillem Balague confirmed reports claiming City have a new target.

Cadena Ser (as reported by Football Espana) claim City have already opened talks with Atletico Madrid midfielder Rodri over a summer transfer.

Rodri has been widely tipped to be the successor of Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets – a player Rice has been likened to – for the Spanish national team and Guardiola is said to see him in this mould.

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‘Atletico won’t have a say’

Crucially City are said to be willing to meet Rodri’s £65 million buyout clause.

The news has also been confirmed by respected journalist Balague on Twitter.

“Manchester City willing to pay the €70 million of the buy out clause of Rodri (so Atlético won’t have a say) and the player happy to study personal terms offered by City,” Balague said on Twitter.

As a result Pellegrini will be hopeful of keeping the 20-year-old.

And that will enthuse Hammers fans still buzzing from the weekend win over Spurs.

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