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Why Spurs are taking United and Liverpool to task

PUBLISHED: 14:48 25 July 2008 | UPDATED: 15:14 07 September 2010

Pat Mooney looks at the background to the Berbatov saga SPURS have formally submitted a year s worth of evidence to the Premier League to back up their complaint over Manchester United s pursuit of striker Dimitar Berbatov, writes Patrick Mooney. United

Pat Mooney looks at the background to the Berbatov saga

SPURS have formally submitted a year's worth of evidence to the Premier League to back up their complaint over Manchester United's pursuit of striker Dimitar Berbatov, writes Patrick Mooney.

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has cast doubts on comments attributed to him in newspapers appearing to suggest he expected to sign the Bulgaria striker. But that is understood to be only one of Tottenham's concerns.

Ferguson denies making the comments, but the Lilywhites believe United have broken Premier League rules.

Tottenham have also reported Liverpool for their public courting of Robbie Keane.

The next step will see the Premier League board write to all parties before deciding whether to take further action.

Last week, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy accused United of being hypocritical, given that the European Champions reported Real Madrid to governing body Fifa because of their interest in Portugal winger Cristiano Ronaldo.

"The behaviour of both clubs has been disgraceful," said Levy. "We told both clubs very early on that we had no interest in selling Robbie or Dimitar, and that they should refrain from pursuing the players.

"Both clubs arrogantly chose to ignore this request and we now have evidence that both clubs have systematically been working to prise the players away from us, outside of Premier League rules of conduct."

Reds boss Benitez admitted earlier this month that he was interested in bringing the Republic of Ireland captain Keane to Anfield this summer.

But it was Ferguson's reported comments that prompted Levy to speak out about the attempts to unsettle his strikers.

"The public comments by Manchester United's manager, announcing that he has made an offer for Dimitar and is confident that the deal will go through with time working in their favour, is a blatant example of sheer arrogance and interference with one of our players," he said.

"It is also probably one of the worst offences by any manager in the Premier League to date.

"As a result, we have made an official complaint to the Premier League about the conduct of Manchester United.

"Benitez made similar comments in respect of Robbie recently and we made an official complaint to the Premier League about the conduct of Liverpool earlier this week.

"I have absolutely no wish to sell either player and to date we have not accepted any offer for either."

The Premier League confirmed they had received Tottenham's official complaints in relation to breaches of the Premier League rules K3 and K8.

United issued a brief response to Tottenham's claims with a spokesman saying: "We are aware of the allegation and will co-operate with the Premier League as necessary.

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