Arsenal have been ‘gazumped’ on Declan Rice by a pretty much identical, failed bid

Editor F365
Man City want Rice

Manchester City made a ‘huge’ bid for Declan Rice that was pretty much exactly the same as Arsenal’s bid. Gazumped, my arse.


How much is that statement in the window?

It’s such a bloody ‘huge opening offer’ that it amounted to exactly the same as Arsenal’s bid (£90m) except with an ever-so-slightly-bigger guaranteed fee of £80m rather than £75m. Huge.

Now Pep Guardiola’s side have pounced on their rivals’ hesitancy with the statement offer.

It is a statement offer, but only if the statement is ‘We don’t really want Declan Rice that much but what we absolutely don’t want is for Arsenal to get him on the cheap’.

And if you thought that was bad; check out this headline on the never-knowingly-undersold Mirror:

Declan Rice has made transfer preference clear as Man City gazump Arsenal with huge bid

‘Gazump’? According to the dictionary, ‘gazump’ means ‘make a higher offer for a house than (someone whose offer has already been accepted by the seller) and thus succeed in acquiring the property’.

Even if we ignore the whole footballer/house stuff, this fails on just about every part of that definition. It’s not a higher offer; the original offer had not been accepted; Man City have not succeeded in acquiring the property/midfielder.

It’s also not, relatively, a ‘huge bid’ but we knew that already. And so does writer Tom Victor, for he is not daft.

Declan Rice is still understood to favour a move to Arsenal, despite Manchester City making a statement of intent with a bid for the England midfielder.

West Ham captain Rice is expected to leave the London Stadium this summer after leading the team to Europa Conference League glory. The East London side continue to wait for a bidder to meet their £100m+ asking price, though – a sum which could see Rice match the British record fee set by Jack Grealish’s 2021 move to City.

The British record has since been broken by Enzo Fernandez but carry on…

Arsenal have so far seen multiple bids for the 24-year-old knocked back, prompting suggestions they could pursue other targets. Still, despite City being very much in the race, Rice’s preference is an Arsenal switch which would allow him to remain in the capital.

It’s almost like Arsenal have not been gazumped at all.

READ: Arsenal have played Rice game perfectly so far as rejected Manchester City bid underwhelms us all


Over at MailOnline, their Declan Rice headline comes in the classic MailOnline tradition.

West Ham ‘REJECT Man City’s £90m opening bid for Declan Rice’, re-opening the door for Arsenal – who are plotting a third offer within next 48 hours – as Man United lurk as outsiders

It’s massive ✔
Man Utd crowbar ✔

Mediawatch is fascinated by the REJECTED bid ‘re-opening the door for Arsenal’ like there was ever a point when West Ham would have accepted the £90m from Manchester City after rejecting (sorry, REJECTING) the other £90m from Arsenal.


Smoke on the water…
It’s still only June and it already feels like the Declan Rice saga has been going on for about three years. It must feel like even longer to The Guardian‘s Jacob Steinberg, who told us on June 12 that ‘Arsenal are close to agreeing a fee with West Ham for Declan Rice and are expected to pay more than £100m for the midfielder if certain add-ons are achieved’. Oh my sweet summer child.

Three days later he had to admit that Arsenal had failed with a ‘first bid of £80m plus add-ons for Rice’ and then – ever the West Ham fan – he predicted that ‘West Ham’s hand would be strengthened by a bidding war, with a source predicting that an offer from City would “blow Arsenal out of the water”‘.

Then West Ham rejected a second Arsenal bid – which was actually lower than the £80m plus add-ons Steinberg had revealed days before – and Manchester City were now ‘monitoring the situation’.

Two days later (on June 22), we were told that ‘City have the financial wherewithal to meet West Ham’s asking price of at least £100m, and it would be hard for the 24-year-old to turn down the chance to play for Pep Guardiola’.

How gutting that Manchester City then finally entered the fray with a bid of £80m plus add-ons to leave Arsenal not just ‘in the water’ but floating really quite serenely indeed.


More smoke on the water
So what’s next? A third Arsenal bid, presumably, with keen to get the ball rolling by pretending early doors that said third bid has already been made:

Arsenal sent Enzo Fernandez transfer request in third Declan Rice bid from West Ham

Has there been a third Declan Rice bid? Has there balls.

Has there been a transfer request made? Has there balls.

The entire story is based on this tweet:

That’s it. That’s all. That’s the ‘Enzo Fernandez transfer request’. Which has emerged just five months after David Moyes said: “I think Declan will be blowing that (British record) out of the water, that’s for sure, when it comes around.”

Hold on… a Rice bid “blowing” something “out of the water”? That sounds familiar. Didn’t know Moyesy was a Guardian reader.