Parker saga continues
Avram Grant is confident that with only four days left until the transfer window shuts Scott Parker wants to stay, although the West Ham United manager accepts there is an outside chance the midfielder may leave for Tottenham Hotspur. Grant confirmed that the Nigeria forward Victor Obinna has signed on a season’s loan from Internazionale.
Spurs’ qualification for the Champions League group stages this week heightened the requirement for Harry Redknapp to add depth to his squad and the manager retains an interest in signing Parker, having had an £8m bid rejected earlier this summer.
West Ham have continually said Parker is not for sale. If a lucrative offer was made for the 29-year-old, which David Gold and David Sullivan, the owners, accepted, it would leave Grant struggling to replace the midfielder before the transfer deadline on Tuesday.
When this was put to the Israeli he said: “We didn’t think about any other situation. Because of [new] players like Obinna, [Pablo] Barrera and Winston Reid they need experience [around them] here in the Premier League and we agreed they need a player like Scott Parker. But in football anything can happen.”
Parker is yet to sign the improved deal that was offered to him earlier this month. Grant said: “As far as I know the club wants him [to stay] for a long, long time and Scott wants to stay here so he’s part of our project for the next year. We are looking to develop young players and we also need players like Scott. There are not many like Scott here.”
West Ham have lost their opening two league fixtures and face a difficult trip to Manchester United tomorrow, followed by the visit of Chelsea following the international break. Defeat to the champions of the last two seasons is a real possibility, raising the spectre of the club reaching mid-September without a point.
Grant said: “It’s a big challenge and the players need to look at it like that. If you don’t take any hard situation as a challenge you cannot succeed. Not in sport and not in life. Manchester United are a better team than West Ham but it’s not always the better team that wins. We need to do a few things to make life not easy for them.”
Regarding Obinna, who is on a season-long loan and played for Nigeria in the World Cup, Grant said: “He’s quick, young , he has the qualities which are good for us because we needed quicker players in [our] forwards.”
Grant would not be drawn on speculation that he hopes to sign David Trezeguet from Juventus but did say he is still in the market for another striker, and a right-back.
He added: “I cannot answer about Trezeguet or others. There are a few areas that we don’t have players at all so this [forward and right-back] is our first priority. But in any position if there are players that can be good for us [we are interested] because we have a long season.”
Parker to Arry
WHU midfielder Scott Parker is poised to leave Upton Park and join Tottenham Hotspur in an £8 million deal, according to The Daily Mail.
Spurs manager Harry Redknapp is determined to sign 29-year-old Parker before the transfer window closes on Tuesday and bolster his squad ahead of the club’s Champions League campaign.
However, West Ham’s owners David Gold and David Sullivan have already stated that the midfielder is one player they do not want to sell despite the clubs finances.
But with time running out, the circumstances could see them sell their most experienced player, which will be a massive blow for manager Avram Grant who had already rejected a bid of £8m earlier in the summer.
Grant could, however, use the money to compete with Stoke City and Fulham to sign Portsmouth defender Marc Wilson, although it still wouldn’t compensate for the loss of Parker.
It would also seem that West Ham will also listen to offers for Mexican forward Pablo Barrera, who only signed a four-year contract recently, with an Italian club said to be interested in the player.
Carlton Cole’s future could also be decided in the next 24 hours as a host of clubs are ready to pounce to secure the services of the England striker.
Scott to leave