Spurs keep young guns on sidelines

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The Independent Football

Tottenham Hotspur have withdrawn four players from the England under-19s squad to play the European championships next month, prompting fears that clubs are not taking seriously the need for youngsters to gain experience of international football.

With a new scrutiny being applied to English football's youth programme in light of this summer's disappointingly early World Cup finals exit, Spurs claim that Stephen Caulker, Ryan Mason, Dean Parrett and Andros Townsend would not benefit from playing a tournament without the benefit of a pre-season training programme. The club have written to the Football Association to explain their decision.

Meanwhile, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is reportedly trying to arrange three separate shirt sponsorship deals for the coming season. Spurs hope that by striking deals with different sponsors for the Champions League, Premier League and domestic cups the club will maximise annual revenues at close to their target of £10m.