Manchester United identify Rice alternative

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Declan Rice has quickly established himself as a West Ham United fan favourite in the past couple of seasons.

The England international catapulted on to the scene at the London Stadium and has never looked back, becoming an integral part of the midfield alongside Mark Noble.

Manuel Pellegrini will have been impressed with the 20-year-old at the beginning of this Premier League campaign as he continues to go from strength-to-strength.

Sunday’s performance against Manchester United highlighted just how well he continues to play, as he was solid all afternoon and helped his side keep a clean-sheet in a 2-0 victory.

Rice was phenomenal on the ball for his side at the London Stadium, making 35 passes in the game at an impressive success rate of 97.1% according to WhoScored – his highest of the season so far.

Noel Whelan recently tipped Manchester United to sign Rice, and break the Premier League transfer record fee to do so when speaking with Football Insider.

With their interest seemingly going nowhere, the Red Devils have been reported by the Daily Star to have identified an alternative to Rice – Brescia’s Sandro Tonali.

The newspaper claim that a number of top European clubs including Borussia Dortmund and Juventus are keeping tabs on the £45million-rated man, who is a cheaper alternative to Rice.

That surely means that West Ham can rest easy as the Premier League giants are set to look elsewhere to strengthen their midfield.

Ever-present in the Hammers’ side, Rice has been exceptional defensively and helped anchor the midfield in front of the defence as West Ham have kept four consecutive clean-sheets.

The 20-year-old has averaged 3.5 tackles per game according to WhoScored, as well as 1.8 interceptions as he consistently cuts out opposition attacks in games against some of the best in the Premier League.

With Manchester United set to look elsewhere, West Ham can surely rest easy as they look set to keep one of their brightest talents.

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