Liverpool move for £150m star 'wouldn't be a surprise' at Anfield

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp reacts

Liverpool will be looking to sign a central midfielder next year and it would not come as a shock if they aimed to lure West Ham United star Declan Rice to Anfield, according to transfer insider Dean Jones.

Jurgen Klopp strengthened his options in the middle of the park by sealing the loan arrival of Arthur Melo from Juventus on deadline day, but the German could seek a long-term acquisition at the end of the season.

GiveMeSport Transfer Update With Dean Jones
GiveMeSport Transfer Update With Dean Jones

What’s the latest news involving Rice?

Rice was appointed as West Ham’s captain following Mark Noble’s retirement in the summer and he has already gone on to make seven appearances since the new season got underway.

But there is uncertainty over the 23-year-old’s long-term future at the London Stadium as he has entered the final two years of his £62,000-per-week contract, although there is an option for the club to extend the agreement by a further 12 months.

It is understood that Rice turned down a third fresh proposal from the Hammers in April, while he also failed to put pen-to-paper when an eight-year deal worth £200,000-per-week was tabled.

Liverpool boss Klopp reportedly made the West Ham man his number one target ahead of the summer transfer window as he looked to acquire a top class central midfielder, but a move did not come to fruition.

Amid additional interest from Chelsea and Manchester United, Rice’s current employers slapped a £150million price tag on him to deter suitors.

What has Dean Jones said about Rice?

Jones understands that Liverpool will be looking to tempt a new central midfielder to Merseyside in 2023.

While the journalist understands Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham is firmly on the Reds’ radar, he would not be shocked if Rice was targeted.

Jones told GIVEMESPORT: “We know that Liverpool will be in the market for a player of that type next year.

“I still think that Jude Bellingham will be the priority for them, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Declan Rice was mentioned.”

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Would Rice be a better signing than Bellingham?

While Bellingham has no experience of Premier League football, Rice has made 173 appearances in the competition, so he ticks that box.

The 32-cap England international has also been described as ‘admirable’ after becoming a key player for West Ham at such a young age.

However, statistics show that Bellingham averaged more goals, assists and shots per 90 minutes than Rice last term, so the Dortmund star could be a better option if Klopp is seeking a midfielder who will offer a real threat in the final third of the pitch.

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