Moyes admits West Ham may need to improve Rice offer

David Moyes has conceded that West Ham may have to up their offer to keep Declan Rice at the club following reports that the midfielder had turned down a new contract.

Chelsea have been heavily linked with a move for Rice this summer – who played for the club’s academy until being released at the age of 14 – but would require a takeover to go through in order to sign him because of sanctions on Roman Abramovich.

Manchester United are also said to be interested in the midfielder.

Transfer journalist Fabrizio Romano reported on Friday that Rice has turned down a third contract offer from the club and is open to a move away this summer.

And Moyes – while relaxed about Rice’s future – is aware that it could take a bigger offer to keep him in east London long-term.

“Maybe he just wants more money. People do turn down contracts, it’s not unusual for players at clubs to turn down contracts – maybe it’s a negotiation tactic,” he said.

“I don’t know who put it out publicly because we certainly didn’t. So unless you’ve got who put it out or who said it, I couldn’t really answer it.

“We like Dec and we’ve still got three and a half years to go on his contract so I don’t think there’s any big panic.

“But we’ve said before that we’ve got no intention of selling.

“We’ve got him for three and a half years so it’s (a new contract) not the biggest priority. We’ve got other priorities like probably trying to add to the squad and get other positions in.”