Transfer news – Harry in crunch talks?
With Richard Willcox
News of player transfers has really been overshadowed by all the excitement surrounding the managerial merry-go-round.
Tomorrow we expect that Liverpool will announce formally that Brendan Rogers is their new manager, having now agreed a compensation package with Swansea.
Paul Lambert stormed out of Norwich in order to talk to Randy Lerner about the vacant Villa position, but Norwich rejected his resignation. They clearly know they’ve lost their manager but in order to secure the maximum amount of compensation, they had to refuse his request. This is one the lawyers will be called in for.
The latest and somewhat surprising news is that, reportedly, Harry Redknapp is to hold showdown talks with Daniel Levy at Tottenham, after a Middle Eastern consortium showed some interest in taking him to Qatar.
It’s no secret that Levy is still angry with the way that Redknapp blew third place in the league, which meant Spurs missed out on Champions League football next year. Not only will the North London side miss out on the lucrative competition and the kudos of playing in Europes premier cup competition, but that failure means some of their key players will be off. Van der Vaart, Luka Modric and GarethBarry will all probably leave in the summer, although it’s less clear what Barry’s intentions are as he remains a little more coy that the other two.
Harry may feel that he’s taking Spurs as far as he can given that they will lose those key players, while the chances of him ever managing England now are clearly zero. Perhaps he’s decided it’s time to sit back in the sun and collect a big fat pay cheque in the Middle East (tax-free).
Was he unsettled by rumours earlier this week that Tottenham might be talking to Andre Villas-Boas?
No news on who’s going to be managing Chelsea next season but it looks as though Hulk has signed on the dotted line. This Chelsea team is shaping up rather nicely for next season, following the signing of Eden Hazard earlier this week. Roberto di Matteo must have the patience of a saint and is keeping a very low profile.
Turning to players news:
Brendan Rodgers, could raid Swansea for four of his former players: Scott Sinclair (23), Gylfi Sigurdsson (22), Joe Allen (22) and Ashley Williams (27). That said, these rumours always surface as journalists and pundits speculate which players a manager might want to take with them, but it’s not that simple.
The same is being said about Grant Holt following Paul Lambert to Villa – this is based purely on speculation.
Where is Dimitar Berbatov heading? Well we thought his former club Bayern Leverkusen, but they are baulking at the fee United are asking for the 31 year-old striker. United signed Berbie for a club record £30.75m from Tottenham in Aug 2008, but have activated a one-year extension in his contract which prevents him from leaving on a free (presumably to extract some cash from any suitors). There’s no way they’ll recoup anything like that, or the £6m fee they are apparently after.