Declan Rice joins Arsenal in record deal £105m from West Ham

Declan Rice has joined Arsenal from West Ham in a record £105m deal.

The transfer is made up of a £100m initial fee plus £5m in performance-related add-ons.

It is the highest amount an English club has paid for an English player.

Arsenal had two club-record bids rejected by West Ham – the first a £90m offer made up of a £75m fee and £15m in add-ons and its opening offer thought to be worth £80m plus add-ons.

Jack Grealish held the previous Premier League transfer record after Manchester City bought him from Aston Villa for £100m in 2021.

In a video from Arsenal’s training centre, Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta gathered the squad to welcome Rice “to the family”.

Rice, who led West Ham to a Europa Conference League trophy, bid a heartfelt goodbye to a club he considered “home” on Saturday morning.

He described how much of a “tough” decision it had been for him to leave the east London club but it was ultimately down to his “ambition to play at the very highest level of the game”.

The 24-year-old midfielder said: “The last few days and weeks have been an absolute whirlwind of emotion, but it is important to me that I have the opportunity to say goodbye and reflect on what has been such a special and memorable part of my life.

“When I travelled all the way from my home in south west London to Essex for a trial with West Ham at the age of 14, not really knowing what to expect, or whether it was a good idea to consider the possibility of playing for a club miles away from my family and where I had grown up.

“However, I knew from the very first moment I walked into Chadwell Heath that I had found another place I could call home.”

West Ham thanked Rice for his service to the club and the “memories” he left behind.

The England star’s statement said: “The loyal, passionate, devoted, at times hilarious, and always honest Hammers, who are massive everywhere you go…!

“You have taken me into your hearts as one of your own from day one. Even when it was just a handful of fans at the Under-18 or Under-23 games, I felt that love, and it has just grown stronger as the years have passed.”

Sky News

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