The England midfielder and West Ham have been reluctant to discuss a move away until after Wednesday’s final in Prague, although it is thought that his preference is to stay in the Premier League.
West Ham value their captain at £120million but Arsenal will push to strike a deal that is closer to £90m.
The Hammers are resigned to losing Rice whatever the outcome of the clash with Fiorentina and Arsenal will accelerate talks for their No1 target after that game.
The Gunners are looking at signing two midfielders this summer and are also interested in Manchester City skipper Ilkay Gundogan.
The 32-year-old, who scored twice in the FA Cup final on Saturday as City beat Manchester United 2-1 at Wembley, is due to be a free agent at the end of this month.
The midfielder has not decided his future yet but is due to do so after Saturday’s Champions League final against Inter Milan in Istanbul. Like Rice, Gundogan is focused on finishing the season as City chase a historic treble.
Pep Guardiola wants Gundogan to stay at City and they remain in talks. City had originally been proposing a new one-year contract for the German, but they could increase that to include the option for a further 12 months.
Barcelona are an attractive option for Gundogan, who is a fan of the city and the team’s style of play. The Spanish champions are also expected to offer him at least a two-year contract.
Arsenal will hope manager Mikel Arteta’s relationship with the midfielder can strengthen their hand. Arteta previously worked with Gundogan when he was an assistant coach at City. The Spaniard played a key role in persuading Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko to leave City for Arsenal last summer.
The Gunners had also expressed an interest in Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount, but Manchester United are now the frontrunners to sign him. United have opened talks with Chelsea and it has been made clear to other clubs that Mount’s preference is a move to Old Trafford.
The arrival of a new midfielder at Arsenal will pave the way for Granit Xhaka to leave and Bayer Leverkusen remain in advanced talks to sign him for around £13m. Xhaka has just one year left on his contract at Arsenal and the club are ready to cash in on him.
Bayern Munich have also been linked with a move for the 30-year-old, but it is understood that Leverkusen remain in pole position for his signature.
They are prepared to offer the Swiss international a long-term contract and manager Xabi Alonso has assured him that he will be in charge next season. Xhaka has just finished the best season of his career, scoring nine goals, and feels as though he still has more to give.