Spurs boss responds to Tottenham transfer rumours
Andre Villas-Boas has ruled out a move for Marseille striker Loic Remy, and he also believes it will be difficult for Tottenham to land Joao Moutinho or Willian before tomorrow night’s transfer deadline.
The Lilywhites have been strongly linked with a move for France international Remy – but Spurs’ head coach scotched the rumours at today’s press conference, which was closely followed by the announcement that Jermain Defoe has signed a new contract.
“There was lots of speculation today with Remy and it’s not the case,” said Villas-Boas, who also distanced his new club from reports that he is still trying to sign Moutinho, who played under him at FC Porto.
“I’ve spoken about this player before,” added the Portuguese. “Porto is an extremely difficult club to deal with and, with the player’s value, I think he’s over what Tottenham can afford.”
The same issues are likely to prohibit a late deal for Shakhtar Donetsk’s Brazilian star Willian.
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“He’s a player that we showed interest in,” said Villas-Boas. “We had initial contact with Shakhtar and, again, they’re in a position where they’re a very wealthy club with a wealthy owner – not easy to deal with.
“We can’t say that it’s over but we have approached the club and the player with contacts, and at the moment it doesn’t seem to be happening.”
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Villas-Boas confirmed that Tottenham are keen to sign a goalkeeper, and France No1 Hugo Lloris is known to be at the top of their list.
Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has suggested that the French outfit are willing to sell to Spurs, and France boss Didier Deschamps has confirmed that Lloris “has a decision to make between Lyon and Tottenham”.
Asked about the 25-year-old, Villas-Boas said: “We are very comfortable with our goalkeepers. We can take into account that there is a future that we have to prepare, going on from here, and on that sense we have studied possibilities on that position as well.
“Throughout the goalkeepers available, I think Hugo is one of the best so obviously he’s part of the players that you have as a reference - but again it doesn’t mean that we could conclude a deal for that goalkeeper position in this transfer window.”
Arrivals are likely to mean departures at White Hart Lane, and Villas-Boas admits that he has already spoken to the players who are unlikely to be part of his plans this season.
“Obviously the squad is extremely big, and we’ve spoken about the players that we had to speak with regarding their future,” he said.
“We also don’t want to leave them in an uncomfortable position where you can’t meet the amount of time that players are expecting, and their own expectations.
“They want to be involved in the squad and sometimes through competition or through the manager’s decision it’s not possible to spread the timesheet as fairly as the player thinks. So we’ve made our conversations with those players - obviously it’s not for me to reveal them in a press conference.”
Villas-Boas confirmed that Hamburg are keen to re-sign their former player Rafael van der Vaart, who left training 45 minutes before his other team-mates today.
However, the head coach hinted that the German club’s offer was well short of Tottenham’s valuation, and that a deal is currently not on the cards.
“He can leave [training] whenever he wants,” laughed Villas-Boas. “You finish training and then you leave!
“At the moment we have had interest from Hamburg but for a player of Rafa’s dimension it’s not something that the player deserves - an offer of that dimension - and Tottenham should be respected as a club.”
Follow me on Twitter @BenPearceSpurs