- Oct 25, 2020
What West Ham is doing there isn't giving themselves leverage - rather, it is to put down a marker that says they don't want to sell Rice, and will only consider doing so if someone is prepared to greatly overpay for him. Like Dortmund did with Sancho last summer. The result of that is to reduce the likelihood of a bid being made, and of Rice being sold.Thats the whole thing though. Why should Rice be considered so much more valuable? He looks like a decent player but he hasn't convinced everyone. Far from it. He isn't my choice for our summer business.
You say you can't fabricate leverage by overvaluing an asset, but that's exactly what West Ham have done here. They say 'we want £100m' and the fans automatically think 'we'll get him for £65-70m - great deal for us' when in reality he's done nothing to justify anything over £50m at most. West Ham are setting their market by overvaluing their asset, in the same way that United would be overvaluing Jesse by offering a straight swap.
I think some here are underestimating our leverage because of the way we've thought about Jesse as a United player. Let's be clear here - he is ripping this league apart at the moment and has revitalised West Ham in a way no other player has done since Payet. They'll be desperate to keep him
Our position with Lingard is the exact opposite of this: We WANT to sell Lingard. Obviously, we'd like as much money for him as possible, but it would be very foolish indeed to start off with a position that tells everyone they'll only get him if they hugely overpay. It lacks credibility, or worse, would be taken as an indication that we're not really interested in selling him.
An initial asking price of maybe 30-35 million would be a reasonable way of exploiting the leverage his performance has given us. An asking price of at least 50-60 million, which is what a swap for Rice would amount to, is not.
And, it doesn't matter what you or I think Rice is worth. What matters is what interested clubs think Rice is worth. Which I'm pretty sure is a good deal more than anyone thinks Jesse Lingard is worth.