Chelsea have made Declan Rice their number one transfer target for 2023, according to reports.
The Blues have long been interested in the England international, who was on their books as a teenager before being dismissed by the academy.
Graham Potter recently replaced Thomas Tuchel in the Stamford Bridge dugout, but he too is an admirer of him.
According 90 minutes (opens in a new tab)chelsea (opens in a new tab) will focus their recruitment efforts next summer on moving Rice away from West Ham (opens in a new tab).
The midfielder won’t come cheap, having already been valued by Hammers boss David Moyes at £150million.
Rice is under contract at the London Stadium until 2024, but West Ham have the option of extending his contract for a further 12 months.
The aforementioned report indicates that Todd Boehly inquired about Rice in June, only to be told he was not for sale.
West Ham could, however, be more open to a deal ahead of next season, especially if they miss out on European qualification this season.
And Rice, who turns 24 in January, may believe 2023 is the right time for him to take the next step in his career.
Chelsea are keen to freshen up their midfield at the end of the campaign when Jorginho and N’Golo Kante will both be out of contract.
The club are yet to decide whether or not to bring new deals to the pair, but both players are over 30 and not long-term options at the center of the park.
Meanwhile, Potter’s side won 3-0 against AC Milan (opens in a new tab) Wednesday in the Champions League.
It is their first victory in Europe this season and puts the Blues in second place in Group E.
Chelsea will return to the Premier League against Wolves (opens in a new tab)who sacked coach Bruno Lage last weekend, Saturday afternoon.
James Collins and Steve Davis will serve as the visitors’ goalkeepers.
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In other transfer news, the Blues are said to be top of the line (opens in a new tab) to sign AC Milan sensation Rafael Leao.
Chelsea are also keen to bring in a promising talent from MLS, but face fierce competition for his signature (opens in a new tab) from Liverpool (opens in a new tab).
And if you have time to spare, try our quiz (opens in a new tab): Can you name Chelsea’s last five XIs in the European final?