The midfield duo have sparkled all season for the east London side and prising either of them away from the Irons will not be cheap
David Moyes says that West Ham have not received any major offers for either Declan Rice or Tomas Soucek, but has admitted that the club will be forced to consider them if they do come.
However, the Scotsman believes that it would take a significantly cash-heavy approach for the Hammers to part company with either player as they continue to find the form of their career.
England international Rice and Czech stalwart Soucek have emerged as the beating heart of the east London outfit’s unlikely challenge for Europe and their manager hopes that both will remain on the books even if the club’s ultimate charge falters short of their goal.
What has Moyes said?
Speaking ahead of his side’s return to Premier League action against Wolves on Monday, the 57-year-old acknowledged that should a potential big-money move loom for either Rice or Soucek, the club would think it over, but reaffirmed his belief that it would take a major fiscal contribution
“Yes, any club can make offers for players but we’ve not had any big offers,” he stated. “I hope we don’t get any but if we do, like any other club, we would consider them.
“I don’t know where the Bank of England is for Tomas Soucek but I’ve said with Declan, it would take the Bank of England and the Royal Bank of Scotland to get him. It will have to be the Bank of Czech as well for Tomas!”
Moyes on European prospects
The former Everton and Manchester United boss was on bullish form when addressing concerns of several big-name exits should their fairytale bid for the Champions League come up empty, stating that he does not believe the Hammers must secure continental football to prevent an exodus of talent.
“When we signed Tomas Soucek, we brought him in to help us avoid relegation,” he added. “Declan Rice was playing in that relegation team and Jesse has come to help us to get some games.
“To turn around and say we would need to be in the Champions League to keep them, I think all those players would be saying a massive thank you to West Ham for helping them get their careers back on track and for putting them in the right direction.
“I hope we can make the Champions League but if we don’t, I don’t see that has to be the reason that we can keep them. The biggest thing any footballer wants to see is the club makes progress and individually they are making progress.”
The bigger picture
In a season that has seen Everton, Liverpool and Tottenham all occupy top spot before falling away to varying degrees, the Hammers’ initial under-the-radar charge for a first crack in Europe for five years has been one of the stories of the season.
Chelsea’s slip-up against West Brom this weekend has left the door wide open for Moyes – in his second spell in charge at London Stadium, having returned in December 2019 to help stave off relegation – and his side to further their top four claims.
Victory over Wolves on Monday would leapfrog them into fourth, over the Blues – though defeat could prove to be a potentially fatal blow in a highly congested race that also includes Jurgen Klopp’s Reds and Jose Mourinho’s Spurs too.
Rice, meanwhile, is likely to only see his stock rise further in the coming months after effectively playing himself into first-choice XI contention for England during the March international break, with Gareth Southgate left impressed by his performances, alongside Leeds United’s Kalvin Phillips, in midfield.