Former West Ham midfielder Declan Rice in a recent statement revealed that being signed by Arsenal for £105m felt surreal.
He revealed that he no longer pays any attention to his record-breaking price tag.
Recall that Rice became Arsenal’s most expensive player and the most expensive British player in history when he moved to Emirates Stadium this summer.
Arsenal’s previous record signing was Nicolas Pepe who cost them £72m from Lille and Jack Grealish’s £100m move from Aston Villa to Manchester City in 2021 was the former British record.
Unlike Pepe and Grealish who have struggled to impress, Rice is currently one of Arsenal’s stand out players this season.
Speaking to the media ahead of England’s final Euro 2024 qualifying fixture against North Macedonia on Monday, Rice admitted that the nine-figure price tag made him “very nervous”, but the midfielder believes that simply being himself has made the transition easier.
“When the transfer was going through I was very nervous because of the price tag. It’s natural to think about that. You’re a human being bought for £105m, it doesn’t feel very normal. But that was because of what I’d done at West Ham, what they valued me at,” Rice told a press conference, as quoted by the Daily Mail.
“When I signed for Arsenal, I just thought I just need to be Declan Rice, be myself, don’t be any different, everything will go smoothly. The first three weeks of pre-season were really tough in terms of the change. When you’re at a new job you start to feel really settled after a few weeks.
‘That really feels the case now. In terms of the price tag, I don’t really think about it, I just play the games and try to play as well as possible. Honestly, I just try to play my football. I don’t let it affect me in any way, shape or form. I just go to training, try to train as well as possible.”