West Ham United manager David Moyes believes any club showing an interest in midfield ace Declan Rice missed out on a "bargain" by not snapping him up in a £100million deal.
The England international, who helped the Hammers register a fifth win in their last six matches in all competitions with a 3-0 win over Belgian outfit Genk in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday evening, has been heavily linked with an exit from the London Stadium for more than a year, including a switch to Manchester United.
United were keen to add a new defensive-midfielder to their ranks during the summer and Rice was on their list of targets, but financial constraints brought an end to any aspirations they had of securing his signature, following the arrivals of Raphael Varane, Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo.
However, as reported by MEN Sport last month, United have now pinpointed Rice, who played a formidable role in helping England reach the final of the European Championship during the summer, as their number one target to bolster their midfield options in 2022.
The framework for how a deal can be constructed to bring Rice to Old Trafford is understood to have been discussed, with the midfield berth still in need of strengthening at Old Trafford.
However, Hammers manager Moyes has now warned United, or any other suitor, that they will have to pay over £100million to stand any chance of securing the 22-year-old's signature.
Moyes, speaking to Sky Sports, said: "There was a bargain to be got with Declan at £100million. That bargain has now gone.
"We have a lot of really good players at this football club and I think while you're building and developing I think people might always come and look at your players.
"But it is good that they are because that is telling us that they're doing well."
Moyes, who was in charge at Old Trafford for less than a year, has overseen a dramatic shift in fortune at the London Stadium in the past 12 months or so, and Rice has been central to it.
The midfielder, who is under contract at West Ham until the summer of 2024, was also firmly on Chelsea's radar during the summer of 2020, highlighting just how big an interest his performances have generated from the Premier League's top-end clubs.
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