Former Chelsea assistant manager Jody Morris revealed his efforts to bring Declan Rice back to Stamford Bridge long before his move to Arsenal. During his tenure alongside Frank Lampard, Morris advocated for Rice’s signing, emphasizing the midfielder’s potential contribution to the team’s midfield dynamics.
In an interview on the No Tippy Tappy podcast, Morris disclosed that he had reached out to Rice about a potential return to Chelsea, citing the player’s release from the club’s academy as a teenager.
Despite Rice’s interest in rejoining Chelsea, the proposed transfer faced obstacles from the club’s board, ultimately leading to Rice’s eventual move to Arsenal.
Morris recalled his persistence in urging Lampard to consider Rice as a valuable addition to the squad, particularly given N’Golo Kante’s intermittent availability due to injuries.
Despite initial reservations from Lampard, Morris highlighted the subsequent enthusiasm from the manager after closely evaluating Rice’s potential.
Despite initial momentum, the proposed transfer was overshadowed by other signings, and negotiations stalled. Rice later joined Arsenal in a high-profile £105 million transfer from West Ham United, a move that Morris believes Chelsea missed out on, considering Rice’s quoted price of £60-65 million at the time.