Man Utd’s interest in Declan Rice transfer was sparked by Jose Mourinho era

West Ham's Declan Rice has emerged as Manchester United's top target for next summer.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side had a busy transfer window with the Red Devils securing the services of Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho, and Raphael Varane.

However, United were in the market for a midfielder with Paul Pogba's contract due in ten months and Donny van de Beek's future unclear.

And Rice's name was strongly linked to Old Trafford over the summer as a potential replacement.

But it's not the first time that United have been interested in the Englishman, and their initial pursuit started with Jose Mourinho.

According to the Manchester Evening News, United have been keeping tabs on Rice since Mourinho first identified him as a potential target.

"First of all, I like the boy [Rice]. I like what he shows me. He is mature, calm, a team player who doesn’t think about himself," the current Roma boss told The Times ahead of Euro 2020.

"He always has the correct answers and gives incredible stability to the team."

"A team without balance is not a team. Rice is this kind of player. If you have a good back four or back three with a player like Rice in front, England can have more attacking freedom."

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Rice's West Ham contract expires in 2024, but he's not expected to sign an extension with the Hammers.

And David Moyes could be forced to sell him next summer to maximise the fee the Hammers can demand for the midfielder.

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