James' loan move to Stoke collapses in row over wages

Portsmouth shocked by suggestion they should keep paying part of keeper's salary

David James's loan move from Portsmouth to Stoke collapsed yesterday after the clubs failed to agree who was going to pay the England goalkeeper's wages. James, 39, had been set for a move to Stoke in time to face his former club Liverpool today.

However, the deal has been shelved after the two clubs could not agree terms on who would be responsible for his wages, thought to be £65,000 a week. Portsmouth were desperate to remove James from their wage bill but Stoke were only willing to pay two thirds of the sum, leaving the South Coast club liable to pay the rest. Stoke were also proposing to cover the player's wages until the end of the season on 9 May, but Portsmouth wanted them to continue to pay for another seven weeks until the end of his contract.

Portsmouth chief executive Peter Storrie claimed he was surprised by the terms of the deal Stoke were offering. Storrie said: "Stoke hadn't even offered his wages and hadn't offered a deal to the end of the contract. I've never heard of a Premier League side not wanting to cover a Premier League player's wages, never ever."

Portsmouth manager Avram Grant added to the sense of chaos yesterday by admitting he was not consulted about the decision to let James leave, and had no idea why the move had fallen through. Grant said: "I must tell you honestly I don't know what's happened. He was training with us, he belongs to us so nothing has happened. I want him to stay. I heard a lot of clubs want our players but we want to keep our players."

The collapse of the move is puzzling as on face value it had appeared to be a deal in which everyone was a winner. James is looking to impress England coach Fabio Capello ahead of the World Cup; Portsmouth want to take one of their highest earners off the wage bill; and Stoke need goalkeeping cover with Bayern Munich showing interest in Thomas Sorensen.

The situation now leaves James in limbo. He has grown disgruntled with life at Portsmouth, bottom of the table and in financial free-fall. He trained at Portsmouth's Eastleigh training ground yesterday but refused to comment. He is fit and could return to the side to face Birmingham at Fratton Park today. The keeper has made just one first-team appearance in the past two months as a result of injury.

Portsmouth deny claims that James has been omitted from the side in recent weeks because he is nine games away from triggering a clause in his contract that would entitle him to another one-year deal.

James has been included in the squad to face Birmingham, but Grant has been forced to leave out midfielder Jamie O'Hara whose loan deal from Tottenham expired yesterday. O'Hara trained with the first team yesterday but, as from today, he must return to Spurs. Portsmouth are unable to register any new players, including loan signings and free transfers, because of a Premier League embargo put on them as a result of unpaid transfer money owed to other clubs.

Tony Pulis, the Stoke manager, yesterday offered sympathy for his Liverpool counterpart Rafael Benitez who has faced calls for his dismissal after a midweek FA Cup defeat to Reading. Pulis said: "Rafa has been a little unfortunate this year."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Teeth should be brushed twice a day to prevent tooth decay
Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'
footballChelsea 6 Maribor 0: Blues warm up for Premier League showdown with stroll in Champions League - but Mourinho is short of strikers
Those who were encouraged to walk in a happy manner remembered less negative words
Arts and Entertainment
Princess Olga in 'You Can't Get the Staff'
tvReview: The anachronistic aristocrats, it seemed, were just happy to have some attention
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
Life and Style

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

There have been various incidents of social media users inadvertently flouting the law

Life and Style
Stack ‘em high?: quantity doesn’t always trump quality, as Friends of the Earth can testify
techThe proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
footballCSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2: Premier League champions let two goal lead slip in Russia
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London