Spurs hope lure of Champions League can tempt Parker

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The Independent Online

Tottenham Hotspur are likely to table another bid for West Ham's Scott Parker, in the hope that probably a last chance of Champions League football will persuade the 29-year-old midfielder to move.

Spurs' £7m bid for Parker raises doubts about the club's faith in Tom Huddlestone and Wilson Palacios and would seem to spell the end of Jermaine Jenas' White Hart Lane career if another bid is forthcoming. But the West Ham chairman, David Sullivan, clearly sees the retention of Parker as part of his commitment to fans to build a better club and that suggests that a substantially bigger offer would be needed.

"I made a promise that I would not sell Scott and I will not, for any amount of money, break that promise to the West Ham supporters," Sullivan said yesterday. "Scott is not for sale at any price, to anyone. West Ham supporters, for far too long, have had owners that sell their best players and promise one thing and do another. This is a new era. We are building a bigger, better West Ham and when we make a promise, we honour it."

The relationship between the clubs was not helped by Eidur Gudjohnsen heading to White Hart Lane on loan from Monaco last winter, having completed a medical at West Ham. Sullivan was outraged by Spurs' conduct and expressed unhappiness yesterday with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy' tabling a bid for Parker.

"We told Daniel Levy prior to him making the offer that we would not welcome any approach to unsettle the player," a club statement said. "Scott Parker has three years left on his contract and the club has opened talks with his agent over a new five-year deal."

After the disappointment of missing out on a place in England's 23-man World Cup squad, Parker now finds himself in the position of deciding whether to ask for a move or accepting a new five-year contract at West Ham worth £20m.

Meanwhile, the West Ham manager, Avram Grant, has completed his backroom team by appointing former Yugoslavia international Zeljko Petrovic, 44, as assistant manager. Petrovic will work alongside senior coach Paul Groves, first-team coach Kevin Keen, goalkeeping coach David Coles and fitness expert Eamon Swift. Grant said: "I am happy that we now have the staff set-up that I presented to the owners when I came."

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