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Former Arsenal star 'banished' by Mikel Arteta could be the key to Declan Rice signing this summer

Former Arsenal star 'banished' by Mikel Arteta could be the key to Declan Rice signing this summer

Guendouzi could still be key for Arsenal.

Former Arsenal star Matteo Guendouzi who was banished by Mikel Arteta could be key in their summer pursuit of West Ham midfielder Declan Rice.

Guendouzi who now plays for French side Marseille was frozen out at Arsenal back in 2020 following an incident on the pitch involving then-Brighton player Neal Maupay.

The Gunners midfielder grabbed Maupay by the throat and is said to have made comments about the wages of the Brighton players, as reported by The Mirror.

He defended his behaviour citing it as an obsession with winning, but Arteta had enough and axed the Frenchman from the first team.

Arsenal have been fighting at the top of the Premier League this season and maintain a five-point gap on second-placed Manchester City.

However, the pressure seems to be getting to them, with points recently dropped against Southampton and West Ham leaving the door open for City.

The Gunners have been keen to strengthen to help them over the line and ensure continued success, with midfielder Jorginho arriving from Chelsea in January and Rice a target for the summer.

Guendouzi's presence seems to be missed and he could now play a key part in Arsenal's transfer plans this summer.

West Ham interested in signing him

West Ham are reportedly interested in signing the 24-year-old to replace Rice who is set for a big move away from the London Stadium at the end of the season.

According to French outlet L’Equipe (via Hammers News), the club are keen on bringing him back to the Premier League and securing his signature could pave the way for Rice to move to the Emirates.

He made 82 appearances during his spell at Arsenal so would arrive with a good amount of experience in English football.

Marseille want around £26m for his signature which can easily be funded by selling Rice to a top club.

The Hammers have been fighting to avoid relegation this season and will hope survival means they can still command a high price for the Englishman.

They could still qualify for Europe next season if they win the Europa Conference League which would also likely drive the price up.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Mikel Arteta, Declan Rice, Arsenal, West Ham United, Premier League, Transfers