Chelsea hit with West Ham’s hammer

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Chelsea have been hit with a transfer blow after the Blues renewed attempt to sign Declan Rice was once again rebuffed by rivals West Ham.

National Daily recalls that England midfielder once emerged as a priority target for Chelsea former manager Frank Lampard during the Everton boss’ time at Stamford Bridge but the Blues’ interest cooled when Thomas Tuchel took charge.

However, Rice enjoyed his finest campaign to date last term, and was West Ham’s Player of the Year during an impressive season under David Moyes.

Chelsea are looking to replace N’Golo Kante after the Frenchman suffered an injury-ravaged 18 months and National Daily learnt from report by the Mirror that the Blues have stepped up their interest in Rice in recent days.

Todd Boehly is keen to make a number of statement signings following his takeover of the club and Rice would be a significant coup given the interest in him from rivals Manchester City and Manchester United.

But West Ham have no intention of selling Rice and they’ve reiterated that he is not for sale.