Why Declan Rice-Billy Gilmour swap deal could be bad for West Ham
The Hammers holding midfielder Rice is one of the most sought-after players in the Premier League, with rivals Chelsea keen on securing his services. The 21-year-old has been a mainstay in the West Ham midfield for the last two seasons, with his on-field displays improving with time.
Rice’s consistency has seen him grow into one of the first names in the West Ham team sheet in recent times. Despite the side’s dismal show in the league this season, the Englishman has featured in all their 29 league outings, making him a target for many clubs including Chelsea.
With Chelsea eager to grab the defensive midfielder’s services, West Ham manager Moyes has indicated that he would ask the Blues for compatriot Billy Gilmour in return.
Blues teenager Gilmour, meanwhile, has been one of the recent revelations in the league this term. He has mostly featured in cup competitions for Chelsea and was most recently given the Man of the Match award for his stellar show against Liverpool in the FA Cup fifth-round match.
He has made a total of seven appearances for Frank Lampard’s side this season, with three of them coming in the Premier League. Gilmour’s quick rise through the Chelsea ranks had seen him become part of Lampard’s plans in the final few games before play got suspended due to coronavirus.
Rice still way ahead of Gilmour in terms of experience
Predominantly a central midfielder, Gilmour’s versatility had seen him being deployed in a holding midfield role by Lampard in their 4-0 win over Everton in their final league fixture. However, he still lacks experience and has a lot more to develop in his game. So far, he has made just seven appearances for the Blues, all of which have come this season.
Moreover, it seems too early to compare him to the likes of Rice, who has established himself not just at West Ham but also in the England squad.
Unlike Gilmour, Rice is a veteran of 90 Premier League matches and is one of West Ham’s top players at the moment. Hence, a swap deal involving the two players would be a bad move for the club.
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Rice is an established Premier League star while Gilmour is an upcoming talent. The 21-year-old can easily win a starting place in any line-up, leave alone West Ham. Gilmour, on the other hand, still has a lot to prove and would be a risk if the Hammers grab him in exchange for Rice, Hence, they should shy away from any such swap deal involving the two of them.