Spurs to use Keane as bait in Parker bid
Published 20/12/2010 | 05:00
SPURS are set to offer Ireland skipper Robbie Keane to West Ham next month as makeweight in a deal to sign Hammers midfielder Scott Parker.
Ireland captain Keane has slipped down the pecking order at Tottenham -- in recent months, he has frequently failed to even make the bench.
With Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni eager for his striker to get regular game-time after an alarming period of inactivity that appears to be dulling his sharpness, and Upton Park just a few miles from White Hart Lane, a switch to West Ham seems to make sense for Keane.
Wages, though, could be a problem -- the Dubliner would have to accept a sizeable pay cut.
Spurs are very keen on Parker; last summer they offered West Ham a sum for Parker joining in January. If Keane refuses to countenance a move to east London, another out-of-favour player who could be offered is Jamie O'Hara.
Either way, West Ham would be extremely reluctant to lose their captain and terrace favourite, who has been by some distance their best player in a miserable campaign.
Tottenham have also explored the possibility of signing Liverpool right-back Glen Johnson as part of a swap deal for Niko Kranjcar, the Croatia midfielder who wants to leave to get regular football.
Liverpool would need to be willing to pay some of the England defender's £120,000-a-week wages. Spurs midfielders David Bentley and Giovani dos Santo are also available for sale.
William Gallas could return for Spurs' match at home to Newcastle a week tomorrow. The France defender suffered a hamstring injury two weeks ago. Gallas had played 13 consecutive matches but will face competition to regain his place, with Michael Dawson fit and Ledley King progressing better than hoped.
"William Gallas' injury is not as bad as we first feared, he could be fit in another week," said Spurs manager Harry Redknapp. "Ledley's training. If he doesn't need an operation, he could be back soon."
Redknapp also hopes that centre-back Jonathan Woodgate could play this season after fears that a long-standing groin problem was threatening his career.