Goalkeeper Alnwick on way to Spurs in £1.3m deal

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The Independent Online

Tottenham Hotspur have signed the goalkeeper Ben Alnwick from Sunderland in a deal which could be worth up to £1.3m. The 20-year-old, who has been called-up to the England Under-21 squad but is so far uncapped, has been tipped as a long-term successor to Paul Robinson at White Hart Lane.

The Spurs sporting director Damien Comolli said: "We are very pleased to bring another young and talented prospect to the club. Ben may only be 20 years old but he has significant international and Premiership experience. Ben showed great motivation and desire to join us and I know he is excited to be part of our future."

Tottenham's Hungarian goalkeeper Marton Fulop has been on loan at the Stadium of Light since November but has now signed permanently for £500,000.

Sunderland have also signed Luton midfielder Carlos Edwards in a £1.4m deal. Edwards joined Luton in 2005 from Wrexham and made 74 appearances, scoring eight goals. The 28-year-old also performed impressively for Trinidad & Tobago at the World Cup.

Spurs have also brought in the French midfielder Adel Taarabt on loan from Lens. The 17-year-old will be loaned to White Hart Lane after his registration is sent from the French Football Federation. Taarabt has represented France at junior levels and can play as an attacking midfielder or a support striker. The move is understood to be a long-term loan, and Taarabt may eventually sign permanently.

The Spurs manager Martin Jol has invested in the best young British talent since his appointment in 2004, with Aaron Lennon, Jermaine Jenas, Tom Huddlestone and Michael Dawson currently in the first team, and Alnwick now back-up to England international Robinson.

The Dutchman has explained that the transfer market meant he could not continue this trend last summer, but he still brought younger players such as Benoît Assou-Ekotto and Dorian Dervite to the club.

Assou-Ekotto has enjoyed a run in the first team while Dervite has played in the reserves, which is where Taarabt may start initially.

The Bolton Wanderers chairman Phil Gartside is prepared to make Tal Ben Haim "an offer he cannot refuse" to keep the Israeli international at the Reebok Stadium.

Ben Haim is free to open negotiations with interested parties as his contract expires in the summer but Gartside is still hopeful a deal can be done to extend his stay at the club.

The West Ham United manager, Alan Curbishley, has started searching for the experienced players he needs to save the club from relegation. West Ham collapsed to a 6-0 defeat at Reading on Monday and, while Curbishley has identified the need to get the hunger back among his players, he is aware of the need for older heads in his young squad.

Dean Ashton was attracted to Upton Park in the January transfer window last year, but Curbishley could struggle to persuade players to sign this time as the club are in the bottom three of the Premiership.

"People keep saying, 'bring people in', but the last three results might have shot that to pieces," Curbishley admitted. "When you're in the bottom three and you're trying to attract players, it's very difficult. Harry Redknapp couldn't attract players at Southampton because they were in the bottom three; at Portsmouth he managed it and turned it around. We'll have to see if we can get the players in we've been attempting to get in."

Before his departure as manager, Alan Pardew admitted the right side of the West Ham team needed attention, and the Hammers were linked with Shaun Wright-Phillips before Curbishley took over. Curbishley will have money to spend from new chairman Eggert Magnusson.

Wigan have opened talks with West Bromwich with a view to re-signing striker Nathan Ellington, according to the player's agent.

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