Frank Lampard has admitted that he wanted to sign Declan Rice at Chelsea but revealed that he move did not come off for "various reasons" as West Ham refused to part with their main man.
Rice has played an important part in David Moyes' side over the last one year, and has established himself as a vital cog in Gareth Southgate's England squad ahead of the Euro 2020 championship this summer.
Chelsea were linked with a move for the 22-year-old for the longest time, and former Blues boss, Lampard has spoken in glowing terms for the talent midfielder. "We are fortunate to have him in England, West Ham are fortunate to have him. He's a leader and it is clear that he's destined for great things," said Lampard.
He added, "I have probably given it away with how I spoke about him but I think it's common knowledge that I was a big fan of his. It didn't happen for various reasons, but we brought in a lot of players in the summer. But I was a big fan of him. For understandable reasons, West Ham know the player that they have on their hands."
Lampard concluded, "I don't want Declan to be in an uncomfortable position through this because all I see from him is absolute performance and desire to play for West Ham. They gave him the chance there and the choice will be Declan's as the years go ahead, but his performances are great to watch."
Rice was released by Chelsea at the age of 14, but has gone on to become one of the country’s best midfielders. He is currently ruled out after picking up a knee problem during the most international break, but is aiming to return to fitness before the Euros.