Chelsea transfer claim ridiculed with Frank Lampard considering January move

Chelsea have been advised against making any sudden decision to replace N’Golo Kante with Declan Rice as Ally McCoist rates the former still as the best holding midfielder in the world. Chelsea spent close to £250million in the summer market with players such as Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell and Kai Havertz joining Frank Lampard’s new-look side.

The only player Chelsea seemed to miss out on was West Ham star Rice due to West Ham’s asking price.

But transfer expert Ian McGarry reported earlier this month that Chelsea may well try again when the window opens again in the New Year.

“It is our information that West Ham’s fee for Rice was in excess of £60m, which in the end proved just too much for Chelsea right now, who have decided to postpone the pursuit of Rice, although they remain interested in the player very much,” McGarry said on the Transfer Window podcast.

“They will probably go with Kurt Zouma and Thiago Silva in central defender, whereas Frank Lampard’s plan was to play Declan Rice in the middle of a back three initially.

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“However, that interest could be resurrected in January and if not, in next summer’s window where of course Rice will be a further year out of contract and West Ham may be more inclined to sell.”

The rumours surrounding Chelsea’s interest in Rice has led to speculation over Kante’s future at Stamford Bridge.

And talkSPORT host Adrian Durham believes Rice would be a “big upgrade” on Kante.

It has also been reported the France international is looking to leave Chelsea.

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However, Rangers icon McCoist was in disbelief at the idea of Chelsea potentially replacing Kante with Rice.

“Declan Rice is a fantastic player and will continue to improve, longer term he might be an option [for Chelsea],” he said on talkSPORT.

“But I listened to the discussion between Adrian Durham and [Darren Gough] Goughie yesterday, and I’m just not having Adrian!

“His level of reasoning was that Kante was substituted in the World Cup final, right?

“What kind of argument is that to have? He’s got a World Cup winner’s medal, mate!

“I’ll tell you right now, I don’t disagree with the opinion that longer-term Declan Rice would be a great option, whether that’s for Chelsea or anybody else.

“But at this moment in time, for me, Kante would still be the number one holding player in the world.”

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