Ornstein claims some Chelsea staff are worried about signing Lampard wants

David Ornstein believes there are some concerns from Chelsea over the potential signing of Declan Rice.

As the Football Correspondent for the Athletic, Ornstein said to the publication’s offical Youtube channel that there were apprehensions emitting from specific sections of Stamford Bridge over taking the West Ham United midfielder.  

It has been the world’s worst secret that Lampard wants to bring the England international back to the club where he started his career.

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Sky Sports reported that a £50m bid from the Blues was rejected by the Hammers last August, however this has seemingly not deterred the Chelsea manager’s hunt for his prime target.

It would be keeping in trend with the young, British roster that Lampard is embedding into his squad. Rice would be linking up with fellow England internationals Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount, the latter a lifelong friend from their academy days.

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Yet, Ornstein affirms that this determination to sign Rice is coming straight from Lampard’s camp, with others at the club far more wary of recruiting one of their former products.

He said: “This [Rice] is a target driven by Lampard and there are some at Stamford Bridge who harbour reservations, including over whether Rice has corrected certain perceived weaknesses that contributed to the decision to release him from their academy as a teenager.

“And also, the sure scale of finance it would take to get him out of West Ham.”

Chelsea released Rice when he was 14, who moved across the city to West Ham and has flourished in East London ever since, but at £80 million (Daily Star), he would now be an expensive target.

The Chronicle View

I think you’ll be hard-pressed to find a fan who wouldn’t want Rice to be reunited with Chelsea.

He fits Lampard’s mold perfectly, and the combination between him and Mount in midfield would only be beneficial for both club and country.

It’s not 100% clear who makes the final decision on transfers at Stamford Bridge, so it will be interesting to see how much influence the unconvinced members of the Chelsea set-up have on the potential transfer.

Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.